Concern grew over the safety of children using the social network after a string of high-profile attacks on youngsters, some of which led to convictions, including that of serial rapist Peter Chapman. However, Facebook at the time felt that adding a panic button application, allowing children who felt threatened online to quickly inform the relevant authorities, to be unnecessary.
Following a period of increased pressure on the security procedures implemented by Facebook, the social network is now said to be in talks with Ceop once again.
“We have continued talking to Ceop and are working very closely with them on a Facebook application that allows Facebook users, when they have concerns, to connect with Ceop,” Facebook’s director of public policy for Europe told Sky News.
“We have had a number of constructive meetings and are working on a range of innovative approaches that will help educate and raise awareness of how to keep safe online,” said another Facebook representative.
Facebook’s new stance has come as quite a surprise to Ceop, after Facebook initially insisted that they had their own “safety net” in place to snare online predators.
“We have been in dialogue with Facebook for some time,” a Ceop spokesperson said.”The recent public discussions were born out of frustration that we could not reach an agreement. Obviously we cannot confirm progress until we have an agreement in place with Facebook, but we are continuing to work with them.”
A marketing move to cover for some lacklustre press of late, or a genuine move by Facebook to make their network a safer place for children to access? You decide.