How Report Harmful Content Can Help This Safer Internet Day

In the run up to Safer Internet Day we wanted to take a deep dive into the Report Harmful Content service and how they are helping to protect 13+ year olds online.

Here at South West for Grid for Learning, we advocate for all who come across or fall victim to harmful content online, supporting them to take action. Secondary students, teachers and other education professionals are very welcome to get in touch with us through Report Harmful Content (RHC) so together we can build a safer online experience.

About Report Harmful Content

RHC is provided by the UK Safer Internet Centre and operated by SWGfL. We are a national reporting centre that has been designed to support everyone over 13 to report harmful content online. We also offer a mediatory service in cases involving:

  • Online Abuse
  • Bullying or Harassment
  • Threats
  • Impersonation
  • Unwanted Sexual Advances (Not Image Based)
  • Violent Content
  • Self-Harm or Suicide Content
  • Pornographic Content

What Is Harmful Content?

 Anything online which causes a person distress or harm is considered harmful content. We mediate with industry on 8 types of harmful content based on the success we have had responding to this in the past on our other helpline services. Other kinds of harmful content online are already covered by alternative services, and most importantly, whenever the content is criminal, the police are the people to contact.

In addition to our general advice on reporting, we also provide the police with links to the various reporting mechanisms available to them as law enforcement.

Our Network Is Wide

We are also in contact with a number of other organisations: NGOs, local authorities, national agencies and government departments. From there we can put you in contact with the appropriate support. Within SWGfL we work alongside our sister helplines: the Professionals Online Safety Helpline and the Revenge Porn Helpline who support professionals and young people with online safety concerns and adults experiencing intimate image abuse respectively. When the content is not in our remit, we will direct our clients to the right service and support.

How Does Report Harmful Content Work?

After the content is reported directly to the platform hosting it, we will step in if this content isn’t actioned in accordance with industry terms and conditions. We assist by acting as a mediator between clients and industry, escalating issues directly with industry and advocating for clients where necessary. Our flowchart helps to explain what we can do to help. The content can be reported anonymously though, depending on the type of harm, there’s a limit to what RHC can do to help in these situations. How can you as an education professional help?

Although reports from teenagers are increasing through RHC,13-18 year olds are still less likely to report a problem to us than adults. For that reason, we consider it extremely important to work closely with education professionals, making sure you know we are here and how we can help support students.

Hopefully, after reading this, you can recommend us whenever appropriate so together we can support young people, helping to shape a safer internet experience. For now, please do take a look at RHC and follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. We would love to hear from you and thank you for your continued support!

Access Report Harmful Content 

Back to Magazine

Related Articles