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eSafety partners with the European Commission to support enforcement of online safety regulations

eSafety Commissioner 2 mins read
eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant, and the EC's Director General of DG CNECT, Roberto Viola, signing the Administrative Arrangement.

eSafety has joined forces with DG CNECT, the European Commission entity responsible for the enforcement of the Digital Services Act (DSA), under a ground-breaking new agreement.

 

eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant, and Director General of DG CNECT, Roberto Viola, signed the administrative arrangement in a virtual meeting held in advance of the Australia-EU Digital Dialogue, taking on 12 June 2024. 

 

eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant said Australia and the European Commission acknowledge they are much more effective working in tandem to make the internet safer for everyone, especially children.

 

“This unique partnership builds on our existing strong links and will help us better share vital information to help us more effectively regulate online platforms,” Inman Grant said.

 

“By working together, we can ensure that users are protected from harm, whether part of a powerful regional economic bloc like the European Union or as proud citizens of a forward-leaning middle power like Australia.

 

“We all recognise that just as the Internet is global, our joint efforts to effectively minimise online harms at-scale requires precisely this kind of formal collaboration.”

 

The arrangement will support eSafety and the European Commissions regulation of online platforms, respectively Australia’s Online Safety Act (OSA) and the EUs DSA.

Areas of common interest are:

  • Transparency and accountability measures of online platform services
  • Risk assessment and mitigation measures to be implemented by providers of online platforms, notably concerning the fight against illegal content balanced with the protection of fundamental human rights online
  • Algorithms and artificial intelligence, including recommender systems, generative AI as well as emerging technologies like immersive technology
  • Illegal content online, including the transparency of terms and conditions, any notice-and-action procedures, transparency reporting tools, any trusted flagger reporting channels and dispute settlement
  • Rights and safety of children online, including age-appropriate design methodologies and research on emerging, privacy-preserving age assurance methods and age verification technologies.

The co-operation will be carried out through information exchanges, including expert dialogues, sharing of best practices and joint training of technical staff, and may include joint studies and coordinated research projects.

Effective and active cooperation with international partners is crucial to shape a safer and more positive online environment. eSafety's deeper engagement with the European Commission complements the work we have done to help stand up the Global Online Safety Regulators Network, which recently released a joint position statement on regulatory coherence and coordination

 

Background

Under the DSA, the European Commission is responsible for the supervision and enforcement of provisions applying to designated very large online platforms and search engines. Since the general entry into application of the DSA, the Commission has already taken action to ensure that the DSA creates a safer online environment: by bringing unprecedented transparency, including over 16 billion statements of reasons in a public database, by offering due process for platforms' content moderation decisions, by offering access to platforms' public data for researchers, and by opening proceedings where it suspects that these platforms may breach the structural obligations of the DSA.

 


Contact details:

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact 0439 519 684  (virtual phone line – please do not send texts) or media@esafety.gov.au

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