PROTEGELES is a non-profit association that arose as an organisation in 2002, although its Hotline for reporting child pornography and other Internet illegal content has been operating since 2001. It is the only Spanish organisation member of INSAFE (the European Safer Internet Awareness Centres and Helplines network), INHOPE (The International Hotlines’ Network), eNACSO and Missing Children Europe. It is both the Spanish awareness centre and the hotline, and was pioneer creating and running helplines that provide specialized and personalized assistance (by email, messenger and face-to-face) on behavioral disorders related to harmful Internet content: Techno-addictions, eating disorders, cyber-bullying, etc.
PROTEGELES main objective is to make Internet a safer place for children as well as to promote among them a positive and safer use of the other ICT. Aiming at this goal, PROTEGELES develops its activities mainly in two fields:
a) fighting against child pornography and other illegal content on Internet, as a hotline through its website, where the Spanish hotline can be found.;
b) raising awareness on a safe use of Internet among children by organising awareness campaigns addressed to children, educators and parents as well as communication and informative campaigns with a big impact in the media and the general public.
PROTEGELES has been acting as the Spanish Safer Internet awareness centre since 2004. In this function, Protegeles has, among others, been carrying out detailed studies about Spanish children’s habits on Internet and other ICT in order to inform and make aware the general public, and more specifically parents and educators, of the detected potentially dangerous situations. Due to Internet and the new technologies’ ever-changing nature, PROTEGELES tries to keep the path and foresee the new risks for children on Internet by the elaboration of detailed surveys and studies. Surveys allow us to locate the problem and therefore are the first step to tackle it. Then, and once the survey’s conclusions have been published, PROTEGELES launches a preventive campaign proposing a way to face the situation, targeting at the education field: children, parents and educators. PROTEGELES has acquired high expertise developing in-depth quantitative studies on the use of ICT by Spanish children and young adolescents (Internet, mobile phones, videogames, etc). The CVs of the experts in child safety involved are also provided. All these studies can be found here. PROTEGELES is developing a permanent campaign throughout the Spanish territory giving lectures on online safety issues among minors, parents and teachers distributing among them awareness materials. This permanent campaign has resulted in a much close relationship between PROTEGELES and the schools and in a strong liaison with teachers and parents and teachers associations.