Mobilizing for the protection of children online is both a necessity and an obvious responsibility.
By Pierre Oger and Jean Larroumets
More than 4 out of 10 French people have already been victims of online violence. This phenomenon particularly affects those aged 18-24, with 87% reporting experiencing a cyberbullying situation, according to IPSOS (2022). Digital technology is a powerful tool that must remain so. It offers opportunities for all members of society, including young people who are increasingly navigating the online world at a young age. Today, while our core business is to protect nations, institutions, and businesses, we are committed to leveraging our knowledge, expertise, and dedication for the benefit of youth. This is a matter of social and societal responsibility, as well as a simple act of citizenship.
Children, teenagers, and young adults have grown up with digital tools and use them daily without fully understanding how they work or what lies behind the screen. Daily news highlights issues of violence against children, including exploitation, sexual abuse, cyberbullying, exposure to violent and harmful content, and misinformation, among others, and their dramatic short-term, medium-term, and long-term consequences.
Therefore, we must inform, sensitize, and educate them about digital risks so that they can become active participants in their own safety and the safety of those around them. Parents, as well as all those who surround and support them, need to be aware and trained for collective protection. While laws and regulations are increasingly numerous, and while the French state, Europe, and many countries around the world are committed, private enterprises also have an important role to play. Cybersecurity is a pillar of this vital digital trust in our hyperconnected and interconnected world. EGERIE intends to be a major player in this effort alongside associations, institutions, and states.
Furthermore, as part of our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative, we are engaged, along with all our employees, with several associations and support projects dedicated to the protection of children, especially unaccompanied minors in Toulon, as well as children’s homes with a social mission.
Last year, we supported, alongside Impact for the Future, the charity “L’Enfant Bleu”, which fights against child abuse.
Being part of the Incyber Impact initiative and responding to the call was an obvious choice for us. By contributing to this action that will ultimately finance several projects led by associations for digital protection, including the most vulnerable individuals, we are doing nothing more and nothing less than what is expected of a company today: developing our expertise with efficiency and performance while cultivating our sense of responsibility for the common good by putting our strengths at the service of our values.
Finally, our commitment is also evident in our overall approach to cyberpeace supported by the International Digital Peace Fund, in which we are also involved.
Children are our present and must be able to rely on us. They are also our future, and the world of tomorrow depends on our actions. Therefore, we must mobilize to jointly promote the emergence and expansion of a safer, more inclusive, and more sustainable digital realm. This is a collective action in which each and every one of us can and should participate.