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148% More ‘Child Sexual Abuse Material’ Uncovered by the Irish Internet Hotline

On 14th May 2015 ISPAI Hotline.ie Service launched its Annual Report covering January to December 2014 – an Analysis of Online Illegal Content – during a press event hosted in Dublin, at the Irish Architectural Archive.

In her opening addressed Frances Fitzgerald T.D., Minister for Justice and Equality emphasised that “Hotline.ie contributes to the empowerment of citizens by providing a means to report illegal material and in particular Child Sexual Abuse Material on the Internet and to have it dealt with appropriately in cooperation with the Gardaí.”

2014 was a very busy year for Hotline.ie as it dealt with the greatest number of reports received in one year since its establishment (1999), marking a massive jump of 97% above the average of the previous seven years.

Hotline.ie Reports Received - 2014

Hotline.ie Reports Received – 2014

“Had we not made an sizeable investment starting in mid-2013 to redevelop our Hotline.ie systems to better automate the workflow, we would have been totally overwhelmed by this unexpected increase in reporting. We are proud to be part of this solution to tackle Online CSAM and we are glad that the public trusts the Service enough to report suspected illegal content. More reports result in more new images / videos being taken down at source and brought to the attention of Law Enforcement for police investigation”, commented Paul Durrant Chief Executive of ISPAI and Hotline.ie Manager.

Of the 4,863 reports received and processed in 2014, 335 cases were confirmed by Hotline Analysts as CSAM, which marks an increase of 148% over 2013. Only 9 CSAM cases were traced to Ireland, 222 were traced and forwarded to the INHOPE Internet Hotline in the appropriate jurisdictions for action and 21 were traced to countries outside the INHOPE network and dealt with via Law Enforcement channels.

9 Cases Traced To Ireland

9 Cases Traced To Ireland

CSAM

“Recognition of the value of cross-agency cooperation has been further demonstrated with the creation of the INHOPE / INTERPOL BIK-NET IC-CAM project. Although still in the pilot phase, the initial results are very promising with clear gains in victim identification work combined with the reduction of duplication of effort and enhanced communications supported by joint training” commented Michael Moran – Assistant Director, Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation, INTERPOL.

Untitled

Other forms of illegal content identified by Hotline.ie in 2014 were 20 cases of financial nature, 1 case of Child Grooming activities and 2 cases promotion violence against individual.

The collective national and international efforts to tackle the Online distribution of CSAM are forcing paedophiles to constantly find new ways to avoid detection. One of the findings that confirms and supports this observation is the unprecedented number of .onion reports. The data shows the “journey” starting either in a chatroom, forum or link site. These services are misused as gateways to .onion resources or cyberlockers containing CSAM images and/or videos.

[End]

Editorial Notes:

CSAM – Child Sexual Abuse Material legally known as Child Pornography

ISPAI – Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee of its members. One of its aims is to provide one voice for the Irish ISP Industry at national, EU and International level. Furthermore, since November 1999, ISPAI runs the Hotline.ie Service under agreement with the Department of Justice and Equality, An Garda Síochána and oversight from the Office for Internet Safety. Further information available on www.ispai.ie

ISPAI Hotline.ie Service is part-funded by ISPAI and is also in receipt of grant support from the European Commission. For further details visit www.hotline.ie

INHOPE – The International Network of Internet Hotlines – to ensure international reach and fast response to CSAM hosted outside Irish jurisdiction, ISPAI is a founding member of INHOPE which has grown, over the years, to a network of 51 Internet Hotlines in 45 countries worldwide.

IC-CAM pilot – ISPAI Hotline.ie was one of the 12 Internet Hotlines piloting IC-CAM, a system being developed by INHOPE in partnership with INTERPOL, which captures “hash values” of CSAM newly identified by Hotlines. These “hashes” can then be added to the Interpol Child Exploitation Database to assist in Law Enforcement investigations around the world.

Cyberlocker a file hosting service, cloud storage service or online file storage provider. Cyberlockers are Internet hosting services specifically designed to host users’ files.

.onion is a pseudo-top-level domain designating an anonymous hidden service reachable via the Tor network often referred to as the “Dark Net”.

Note: The full Annual Report covering January to December 2014 will be made available Online @ www.hotline.ie/may2015

Want to Improve Your Online Sales Capability?

The 2015 IEDR ‘Optimise’ fund worth €150,000 is now open for applications,

Should you consider applying?
Does your website fall into the 91% that can’t process sales?

-IEDR-Infographic-v3 15042015

Apply Here

See more details in the press release from the IEDR below:-

91% of Irish SME websites cannot process sales
IEDR research finds majority of Irish SMEs not ‘e-commerce enabled’
IEDR’s OPTIMISE Fund 2015 launched to help SMEs be e-commerce ready
91% of Irish SME websites cannot process sales online, according to new research published today.
The initial findings of research commissioned by IEDR, the company which manages Ireland’s .ie domain registry, finds that the vast majority of Irish businesses are not equipped to take and process consumer sales online.
The research comes as IEDR today, 20 April 2015, launched its OPTIMISE Fund 2015, which supports Irish SMEs and Micro-Enterprises in enhancing their existing online presence and in becoming e-commerce enabled.
The IEDR research surveyed 501 Irish SMEs to examine their online presence, including their e-commerce capabilities. The research found that the majority of Irish SMEs’ websites are not e-commerce enabled, hindering businesses capacity to sell online to their customers.
Key findings include:
While 63% of Irish SMEs have a website
o 91% cannot process sales online
o 62% cannot (in the first instance) take sales orders online;
o 68% cannot process payments online
o 51% don’t have the ability to interact directly with customers through social media or web chat;
o 54% don’t have responsive website designs for tablet or smartphone;
o 66% don’t have video content on their website;
and only 4% have the capacity to run analytics on their website performance.
Commenting on the research, David Curtin, Chief Executive of IEDR, said:
“What stands out most is the mismatch between business owners’ acknowledgement of what’s important and their actions. Business owners know it’s important, but they haven’t (yet) acted to sell online, with 73% saying their website is “important/very important” as a driver of generating sales, yet 62% cannot take sales orders via that website”.
“In an ever more global economy, the absence of an online sales presence puts Irish businesses at a huge disadvantage to competitors. It acts as a major disincentive to attracting customers, for whom buying online is now the norm”, added Curtin.
Now in its fifth year, the aim of the OPTIMISE Fund is to encourage and enable Irish SMEs or micro enterprises to make greater use of existing web technologies and upgrade the e-commerce functionality of their websites.
The Fund is designed to help drive Irish businesses’ sales offering online. Since its’ inception in 2011, the OPTIMISE Fund has provided funding to 60 Irish SMEs and micro enterprises to improve their web and online sales capabilities. With the OPTIMISE Fund 2015 valued at €150,000, IEDR is confident that demand for funding amongst the business community will be significant again this year.
Commenting on the OPTIMISE Fund, Mr. Curtin said:
“The OPTIMISE Fund provides training and services to small businesses to help them to enhance their online presence, particularly their online sales capability. Our research has consistently shown that Ireland’s small businesses often struggle to develop an online sales presence to tap into new revenue streams and ultimately, to grow their business. The OPTIMISE Fund works shoulder to shoulder with businesses and seeks to give a helping hand to businesses to make the leap from digital trailers to digital blazers, who are savvy, successful online entrepreneurs.”
Francis Brennan, owner of The Park Hotel, Kenmare and Ambassador for the OPTIMISE Fund 2015, noted that “online sales are critical to our hotel business. They are now a significant and growing part of most successful Irish businesses’ sales strategy. While having a website is an important shop window for every business, its’ not enough if your customers can’t use it to buy your goods and services online. Today’s survey results clearly show small Irish businesses are falling short when it comes to selling online. Such businesses risk losing out on huge opportunities for growth, unless they improve their online offering.”
Businesses who want to improve their online sales capabilities and optimise their websites are encouraged to apply to the OPTIMISE Fund 2015 by logging on to www.iedr.ie/optimise for further information.

We’ve Changed Our Telephone Number…

After some thought we’ve took the decision to change our telephone number and at the same time our fax number.

telephone-303745_611

As of today our numbers are:-
Telephone – 01 902 0020
Fax – 01 902 0025
International Telephone – 00353 1 902 0020

Why you might be asking?
Well we believe that this will be cheaper for our customers. Most of our customers are now calling us from their mobiles and our old 1890 number is not included with in minute bundles, in fact mobile operators often charge a premium for calling these numbers.

Of course you can always contact us by email at info@hostingierland.ie

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Transfer_In

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*The offer of €14.95 is for one year transfer-in.

Great To Get Featured….!

Looking forward to the Waterford Business Awards tomorrow night… We’ve had some great coverage, WLR Radio Interview with our very own Jonathan Bate, mentions on the radio in the build up and also coverage in the Waterford News and Star – Business section. Thank You Waterford Chamber!

Waterford News and Star

Waterford Business Awards – We’re Shortlisted!

Well done to the Team at Hosting Ireland for being shortlisted for the Waterford Business Awards …

Waterford Chamber - Waterford Business Awards Shorlist

Waterford Chamber – Waterford Business Awards Shorlist

Great to see that Hosting Ireland has been shortlisted for the ‘Services’ category of the Waterford Business Awards along with Eishtec and Whitfield Clinic.

We’re looking forward to the Awards evening on the 6th March!

See full announcement from Waterford Chamber…

Following weeks of careful deliberation by an independent judging panel, Waterford Chamber is delighted to announce the shortlist for the Waterford Business Awards 2014.

The glamorous awards ceremony will take place on Friday, March 6th in Dooley’s Hotel, where some of Waterford’s top businesses will be celebrated for their extraordinary contribution to the economic life of Waterford City and County.

Speaking about the awards initiative, Waterford Chamber President Dr Derek O’Byrne said: “The Waterford Business Awards is all about showcasing entrepreneurial spirit, sharing success stories and supporting the business community in Waterford. We envisage these awards growing year on year and very much look forward to meeting and engaging with them as their business continues to prosper. Of course the awards wouldn’t be possible without the support of our category sponsors, media partners WLRfm and overall sponsors Waterford City and County Council and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them next year and into the future.”

Three businesses have been shortlisted for each of the ten categories and the winners of those categories will then go head to head in the hope of claiming the Overall Waterford Business of the Year 2014, sponsored by Waterford City and County Council.

Frank O’Regan, Chairperson of the Judging Panel, said he and his fellow judges were hugely impressed and faced some very tough decisions during the selection process.

“We had a significant number of entries, far exceeding our expectations. It is so encouraging to see such creative, sustainable and expertly executed business models out there. From what we have seen, the future of business in Waterford is very bright. This was by no means an easy process, there were plenty of discussions and debates and while some businesses may be left disappointed this year, we would encourage everyone to enter again for the 2015 awards.”

The shortlisted businesses were nominated by the public and also through self nomination for all ten categories. An independent judging panel decided upon the finalist shortlist after a rigorous judging analysis of each application

Congratulations to Missionimpossible.ie!

We’re delighted here at Hosting Ireland that our customer Missionpossible .ie was a Winner for the IEDR Optimise 2014 programme…

IEDR Optimise - Angela Butler - IEDR,  Winner - Missionpossible.ie - Tara Dalrymple, Hosting Ireland - Will Harrison

IEDR Optimise – Angela Butler – IEDR, Winner – Missionpossible.ie – Tara Dalrymple, Hosting Ireland – Will Harrison

Have an online business that needs some development? Why not apply for the 2015 IEDR Optimise fund and you too could be a winner!
The 2015 Optimise programme will be open for applications from 2nd March 2015.
We’ll have more details on how to apply shortly…

See below full press release from the IEDR…

IEDR calls on SMEs to apply for 2015 OPTIMISE programme launched by Minister for Communications, Alex White, T.D.

– Offline businesses eligible to apply this year – 60 SMEs benefit to date –

Monday, 26th January 2015. The IE Domain Registry (IEDR), the managed registry for Ireland’s official Internet address .ie, today announced that its OPTIMISE e-Commerce Website Development programme will help a further 15 small firms to improve their e-commerce capabilities in 2015. Calling on Irish SMEs to apply, IEDR has opened the OPTIMISE programme for the first time to applications from small businesses operating entirely offline, i.e. without a web presence. The announcement was made at a ceremony addressed by the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White T.D. who presented graduation certificates to last year’s OPTIMISE winners.
Now in its fifth year, IEDR’S OPTIMISE programme has already provided 60 SME and micro-business owners with consultation, training and e-commerce development support, including tailored e-tools and features, to “optimise” their existing online presence and grow their business via the Internet.
Research1 shows that thousands of Irish small businesses still remain offline. Their absence from the Internet means that they are missing out on a share of the €6 billion spent online by Irish consumers annually, over 60% of which goes to businesses abroad2.
IEDR believes that its model of working shoulder-to-shoulder with business owners and service providers through a dedicated programme such as OPTIMISE addresses the issue more effectively than merely cheerleading from the side-lines. IEDR hopes that its decision to also support small firms with no online presence will give at least some of those businesses the training, tools and knowledge to embrace online channels and technologies as viable routes to their customers and markets – and as a pathway to sustainable business growth.
Speaking at the event, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White, T.D., said: “Our return to economic growth, renewed consumer confidence, and the extra money – albeit modest – that is now finding its way into people’s pay packets all provide opportunities for Irish business. The growth rate of the digital part of the economy is about 20% each year. That’s why the Statement of Government Priorities put an emphasis on the digital economy, because it has huge potential to help sustain and accelerate the recovery in jobs and incomes that is now underway.

The Government is taking action to significantly increase the number of companies trading online, and to increase the share of online retail spend that goes to Irish businesses. Last year my Department launched a national Trading Online Voucher Scheme. The scheme is an initiative under the Government’s National Digital Strategy and is included in the Action Plan for Jobs. Working in partnership with Enterprise Ireland and the Local Enterprise Office network, the Scheme aims to get 2,000 small businesses trading online by the end of this year.
Schemes such as OPTIMISE and the Trading Online Voucher Scheme play a critical role in stimulating those businesses who need to be online but who need a little support to take a crucial step. I want to acknowledge the IEDR for recognising this and for continuing to fund and grow the OPTIMISE Fund.”
Congratulating the small businesses who completed IEDR’S 2014 OPTIMISE programme, Mr. David Curtin, Chief Executive of the IE Domain Registry, said: “IEDR is proud to have helped 60 small firms to embrace e-commerce and find their niche online. Now in its fifth year, OPTIMISE is evolving too and we are excited to extend our support to offline businesses for the first time. I’d strongly encourage SMEs to take a leap of faith, apply for a place and let IEDR help them to realise their online potential this year.
OPTIMISE is about identifying the right tools and technologies for each applicant and instilling the confidence and know-how to help small business owners take their company forward online. We understand that there are often time, resource and knowledge gaps for SMEs when it comes to e-commerce and OPTIMISE seeks to fill those gaps with practical support, development and training for the small business owner.
With online shopping entering the mainstream for Irish consumers there’s never been a better time for small firms to be e-commerce ready. It’s something that Irish companies have remained worryingly slow to do, yet the 2014 OPTIMISE winners have strong results to show from taking small steps towards long-term improvements in their e-commerce capability. I congratulate them and look forward to seeing their businesses flourish online.”
The application process for IEDR’s 2015 OPTIMISE Fund will start on 2nd March 2015. For more information please visit www.iedr.ie/optimise or follow @IEDR_dot_ie on Twitter for updates.
OPTIMISE 2014 winners who received certificates of completion include family run businesses, emerging and established companies from the jewellery, travel and tourism, retail, charity and service sectors (full details below).
2014 OPTIMISE Winners
2014 OPTIMISE Winner Details
Make-a-Wish Foundation
www.makeawish.ie
Charity organisation who grant wishes to children between the ages of 3 and 17, who are battling life threatening medical conditions throughout Ireland.
Kilkenny Tourist Hostel
www.kilkennyhostel.ie
Hostel providing budget accommodation for up to sixty guests in the centre of Kilkenny.
Love Achill
www.loveachill.ie
Achill Island based company providing tourist and surfing related services while also producing bespoke gift products for wholesale and retail customers.
JF Sports
www.jfsports.ie
Retail sports shop specialising in running and football related products based in Carlow.
Sex Siopa
www.sexsiopa.ie
An online adult retailer for safe, health focussed and well produced accessories.
Dublin Taxi Transfers
www.dublintaxitransfers.ie
An online booking agency which allows customers to book a taxi from Dublin Airport to destinations all around Ireland,
JW Weldon
www.weldons.ie
A fourth generation family jewellery business specialising in diamond engagement rings, antique jewellery and Irish silver.
Party Mad
www.partymad.ie
Family run online business retailing fancy dress costumes, party supplies, and balloons throughout Ireland.
Backstage Theatre
www.backstage.ie
Purpose built theatre located just outside Longford town which comprises a 212 seat auditorium and gallery and performance space.
Donegal Shop
www.donegalshop.ie
Dublin based family business retailing Irish crafts, knitwear, wool and tweeds from Donegal and other parts of the country.
Mission Possible
www.missionpossible.ie
A Galway based SAAS cloud reward and recognition platform which enables companies to reward their staff by getting personal tasks completed for them whilst they are working.
Stonechat Jewellers
www.stonechat.ie
A contemporary jewellery store specialising in hand-made Irish designs created in their in-store workshop and by selected designers.
House of Ireland
www.houseofireland.ie
A retail business specialising in the sale of Irish clothing, jewellery, china, linen and crafts.
Extreme Ireland
www.extremeireland.ie
Tour provider offering daily tours of Ireland’s major attractions along with adventure tours and climbing and mountain skills courses.
Office.ie
www.office.ie
Dublin based provider of office supplies and services to the business sector throughout Ireland.

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This is good news if you think you might be considering doing business in Europe in the future, and you want to protect your name or brand outside of Ireland.


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