Federal Ombudsman to create awareness on cybercrime against children

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Ombudsman (Wafaqi Mohtasib) will soon launch a countrywide awareness drive to equip the masses and key stakeholders with tools and techniques needed for combating cybercrimes against children in an effective manner.

A sub-committee of a high-level task force, formed by the Federal Ombudsman at the end of last year to evolve a holistic plan of action to curb cybercrime against children, have finalized an all-encompassing strategy in that regard, Wafaqi Mohtasib Commissioner for Children and Transgender Syeda Viquar un Nisa Hashmi told reporter.

Viquar un Nisa, who is also convener of the task force, said under the strategy, multiple detailed sessions would be arranged with parliamentarians, judiciary and police on the issue for ensuring policy initiatives, while the masses would be sensitized through Mosques, Lady Health Workers and other means.

She said public service messages would be broadcast at electronic, print and digital media for extensive sensitization of the citizens about the issues. The convener said the messages would be displayed at public places such as markets, police stations, hospitals, railways stations.

Sharing the strategic objective of the awareness campaign, Viquar un Nisa said it was meant to increase public awareness on the effects of IT on the abuse and exploitation of children forms of cybercrimes against children and imbibe skills in children so that they may protect themselves from being trapped.

Under the drive, she said the lawmakers would be encouraged to bring legal reforms on the issue, whereas initiatives would be taken for inclusion of the subject of cyber-crimes against children in the schools syllabi.

The convener said all the national stakeholders including the public sector especially law enforcement agencies, private sector, civil society organizations, religious groups, media (electronic and print), educational institutions and international development partners would be mobilized to combat cybercrimes against children.

She said another sub-committee of the task force on legal reforms had finalized the draft of ‘Prevention & Control of Cybercrimes against Children Bill, 2021’ to introduce amendments in Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA) 2016, Qanoon-e-Shahadat Order, 1984 and other relevant laws.