Press release - 630(2010)

2010 Internet Governance Forum: Council of Europe seeks open dialogue on how to safeguard freedom online

Strasbourg, 06.09.2010 – The Council of Europe will be engaging in an open dialogue with governments, business and civil society representatives on how to safeguard freedom on the Internet - as well as security, openness and privacy - while also protecting users from its risks at the upcoming 5th Internet Governance Forum (IGF) on 14-17 September in Vilnius (Lithuania).

Contributing to the overall theme 'Developing the future together' of this United Nations event - the Council of Europe will present its most recent work to protect human rights online and to provide an adequate legal framework for the Internet, including:

§ Entry into force of the convention aimed at protecting children from sexual exploitation and abuse, including the criminalisation of “grooming” of children by adults

§ Preparation of a convention aimed at combating violence against women which will also address how the private sector and the media can reduce the availability of online services or material which can be harmful to women

§ New convention on counterfeit medicines, including those sold over the Internet

§ A recommendation on data protection and profiling due to be adopted in 2010

§ The implementation of the Budapest Cybercrime Convention worldwide as a common framework for global action

§ The development of an international legal framework for co-operation on the protection of critical Internet resources and cross-border flow of Internet traffic

    The Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, will address some 2,000 participants at the opening session on Tuesday 14 September. She will also open the Council of Europe open forum on Internet openness and privacy, together with Markku Laukkanen, Chairman of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) Sub-Committee on the Media.

    This open forum will involve IGF stakeholders – including representatives of Facebook and Microsoft - in the initial stage of two PACE reports on the protection of privacy and on Internet openness. These reports will used in the planned modernisation of the Council of Europe data protection Convention 108, which aims to meet challenges resulting from the use of new ICTs

The Council of Europe is also organising six workshops on the following topics:

It will also co-organise with the OSCE an open forum on Balancing the regulation of hate speech and media freedom and will be involved in discussions on regional Internet governance dialogue, in particular the European Dialogue for Internet Governance (EuroDIG), which the Council of Europe supports and facilitates together with other partners.

Link to video report