Tuesday 24 May 2022
Area 42 Midi

Panel Description

Speakers Véronique Bechu, Central Unit for Minor Victims (FR); Isabelle Debré, Association L’Enfant Bleu (FR); Fabrice Plazolles, Havas Play (FR); Gregory Mounier, Europol (EU)
What do a blue-winged angel and an online game have in common? They manifest that the future is already here to stay. The panel focuses on how innovation can contribute to making our world a safer place. For the first time, Europol awarded the Europol Excellence Award in Innovation during the annual European Police Chiefs Convention 2021. With this award, Europol aims to put in the spotlight the law enforcement community’s most innovative initiatives and operations.
The Fortnite undercover avatar was an innovative tool to fight child abuse online (French Police Nationale), a creative approach based on the development of an online avatar in the video game Fortnite to which children could report if they were sexually harassed at home. After validation from the Central Unit for Minors Protection within the Central Directorate of the Judiciary Police, a team of 50 volunteers and psychologists connected to the game 14 hours a day, seven days a week from April to May 2020 to assist children asking for help. During this period, 1 200 children asked for help, out of which thirty percent were in a dire situation. Investigations were opened in a number of cases, and the children safeguarded.
Véronique Bechu, Isabelle Debré and Fabrice Plazolles talk about how law enforcement, an NGO and a private company joined forces to make Fortnite a safer (cyber)space where children reported sexual abuse and other forms of serious crime. Gregory Mounier will contribute with insights from Europol’s Innovation Lab and its mission is to help the European law enforcement community to make the most of emerging technologies by developing innovative solutions to improve the ways in which they investigate, track and disrupt terrorist and criminal organizations and keep European citizens safe.

• Which risks emerge considering the fact that minors expose more and more personal data online?
• How can online games help law enforcement protect minors from sexual abuse and other forms of crime?
• How will policing work in the Metaverse?
• How can law enforcement agencies, civil society and private industries collaborate to protect vulnerable groups and what are the data protection related challenges?


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