25 Nov 2022 19:15:00
Statement by Committee of Ministers Chair, Icelandic Minister for Foreign Affairs, on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against WomenStrasbourg, France 25 November 2022
“On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, I reaffirm Iceland’s...
18 Nov 2022 19:40:00Strasbourg, France 18 November 2022
Sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children can happen at home, in school, during extra...
10 Nov 2022 17:35:00SAN JOSÉ, COSTA RICA 10 November 2022
Women have a crucial role to play in effective criminal justice responses to cybercrime, stated...
25 Oct 2022 12:42:00
International Conference on Promoting the role of women in preventing, investigating and prosecuting cybercrimeCosta Rica 10-11 November 2022
Women have a crucial role to play in effective criminal justice responses to cybercrime, whether...
18 Oct 2022 20:20:00
European Anti-Trafficking Day: States must urgently tackle human trafficking for labour exploitationStrasbourg, France 18 October 2022
On the occaision of European Anti-Trafficking Day, tihe Council of Europe’s Group of Experts on...
What is cyberviolence?
Cyberviolence being a relatively new phenomenon that encompasses a wide variety of crimes, the term is still difficult to define precisely. The T-CY Working Group on cyberbullying and other forms of violence, in its Mapping Study on Cyberviolence, settled on defining cyberviolence as:
The use of computer systems to cause, facilitate, or threaten violence against individuals, that results in (or is likely to result in) physical, sexual, psychological or economic harm or suffering and may include the exploitation of the individual's circumstance, characteristics or vulnerabilities."
Why is addressing it important?
Cyberviolence is often misunderstood and not taken as seriously as it should be. Yet, it is important to remember that cyberviolence may start online, but it often ends offline with devastating consequences for the victims and their families. Threats of violence, stalking, incitement to suicide, sollictation of children for sexual purposes... may all result in the victim self-harming or being physically attacked by the initial perpetrator. It is important to act in order to prevent cyberviolence from happening, and to protect and bring justice to the victims.
However, most countries are struggling to recognize the different facets of the problem and to address them in domestic law. Some types of cyberviolence are addressed fully or in part in international agreements, but many remain unaddressed.
The Council of Europe is working across sectors (through, for instance, the mechanisms related to the Budapest Convention, the Istanbul Convention and the Lanzarote Convention) to ensure human rights are upheld in cyberspace as well, for all.