PLDT blocks 88k child abuse links & sites

Published October 28, 2021, 1:12 PM

by Emmie V. Abadilla


PLDT Inc. has blocked at least 88,000 sites and links with online sexual abuse and exploitation of children (OSAEC), nearly three times more in four months, as part of its commitment to protect children online.

OSAEC incidents continue to rise as the country continues to battle with the COVID-19 pandemic, the telco noted.

Hence, it embarked on industry-pioneering efforts to help the Philippine government and concerned multi-sectoral stakeholders deter such crimes.

Earlier, PLDT disclosed it is investing P2 billion for a cyber security operations center, which includes a groundbreaking Child Protection Platform solution.

The dedicated solution enables the telco to continuously detect, respond and prevent access to URLs, domains and content with OSAEC within their network.

PLDT and wireless unit Smart Communications Inc. also became the first Philippine digital service providers to secure membership to the UK-based Internet Watch Foundation.

The membership boosted the two telcos’ intelligence database and blocking of online child sexual abuse materials.

“We remain committed to strengthening our end to end cyber defenses to fight online threats and make the digital environment safer for our millions of customers, particularly vulnerable children,” according to PLDT First Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer Angel T. Redoble.

“We follow a landmark Child Safeguarding Policy institutionalizing programs, practices, and technology solutions that promote the safety and welfare of children across our online and offline business operations,” added PLDT First Vice President and Group Head of Corporate Communications Cathy Yap-Yang.

The program also contributes to PLDT and Smart’s commitment to help the Philippines attain the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) against abuses, exploitation, trafficking, and violence against children.