Reports of non-photographic child sexual abuse imagery

IWF’s remit includes the identification and removal of UK-hosted non-photographic child sexual abuse images and videos.

We received 1,689 reports of suspected non-photographic child sexual abuse imagery from external sources (a reduction of *81% from 2020). However, after our assessment, none of these were confirmed as UK-hosted content.

In 2021 we enabled people to have more freedom to tell us what they were reporting to us. This has enabled us to more quickly triage the reports that come into our hotline. By doing this, we have been able to increase the amount of time that our analysts can spend proactively searching for child sexual abuse imagery, and decrease the time they were spending on off-remit reports. This has contributed to reduction in the number of suspected non-photographic child sexual abuse reports we have received.

*This page was updated in January 2023 after an error was identified in the percentage decrease of non-photographic imagery from 2020.

What can we do about this?

The UK is one of the few countries in the world where non-photographic child sexual abuse imagery is criminal. If we find this content hosted in the UK, we issue a notice to the hosting provider who removes it. This hasn’t happened in the UK since 2016.

However, this type of content does exist online and if UK-hosted, would fail UK laws.

Technology companies want the flexibility of being able to block and filter it to prevent their customers from stumbling across it.

Therefore, we created the NPI List, which contains cartoons, drawings, computer-generated imagery (CGI) and other non-photographic representations of child sexual abuse which is hosted outside of the UK.

The URLs provided in the NPI List are those deemed at the time of assessment to breach UK legislation, specifically Sections 62 to 69 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009. Several international technology companies use this list to protect their services for their customers.

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