Today (February 8) is Safer Internet Day. This year we are calling on everyone to play it safe and fair online.

With so much of our time spent online, it has never been more important to promote the safe use of technology, build digital skills and help all Australians have safer, more positive experiences online.

The federal government’s world-leading Online Safety Act came into force on January 23 this year. This Act provides the eSafety Commissioner with stronger powers to keep Australians safe online. 

A key new power will allow the eSafety Commissioner to remove the “worst of the worst” online content, including criminal content such as child sexual abuse material and terrorist content, no matter where this content is hosted.

The Act will allow for further online protection, including a world first cyber-abuse take-down scheme which will protect adults online, along with a strengthened cyber-bullying scheme to protect children. 

If someone is being abused online, the victim should not be forced to leave social media, but the abuser should be investigated and removed. We don’t accept abuse in public, we shouldn’t accept it online. 

In December 2021, we also announced the Online Safety Youth Advisory Council.

The council will inform policy and programs aimed at keeping young Australians safe online and will report to a range of government departments, including Home Affairs.

All members of the council will be between 13 and 24 years old, giving a voice to young people about online safety policy. 

The Government is supporting the work of the eSafety Commissioner on Safer Internet Day 2022 to show the world that online abuse and harmful content have no place in our society.

We want everyone to feel safe online and to be free of abuse and harassment.

Through simple actions like being safe, respectful and kind – we can all #PlayitFairOnline.

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