Smart Infocast SMS broadcast system in use to fight online child abuse

PLDT said on Thursday, June 10, that Smart's Infocast text broadcasting system is an effective tool in its anti-child sex abuse initiatives.

The web-based text broadcast system is available in 800 communities across the country, reaching 1.3 million people, and can be used as a tool for disseminating info and reporting human trafficking and child abuse at the community level.

"We're here to help the government strengthen its efforts, through our Infocast SMS broadcast system. Smart Infocast has already reached 1.3 million Filipinos in almost 800 communities nationwide, and we’re keen on utilizing this tool to help stamp out online child abuse,” said Catherine Yap-Yang, first vice president and group corporate communications head at PLDT and Smart. 

Infocast has proven useful for local authorities in responding to criminal activities in their areas, said PLDT, broadcasting over 13 million official advisories in the last five quarters.

More than 8,000 child porn sites blocked

PLDT also reiterated that they have been able to block access to "more than 8,000 sites that host sexually explicit materials featuring children."

Since partnering with the UK-based Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) in May 2021, the companies say that they've been able to ramp up blocking of sites. Prior to the IWF membership, they were able to block about 3,000 domains.

PLDT is the first Filipino company to partner with the IWF, which has enabled it to "block child sexual abuse materials or CSAM at the content level." – Rappler.com

Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.

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