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CyberTipline Renewed: NCMEC Launches Updated Reporting Form


For only the second time since the program launched more than 25 years ago, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s CyberTipline released a brand new version of its public reporting form. The goal of the new form is to improve the reporting experience for survivors and other members of the public, and enhance the information collected with each report.    

“Every report made to the CyberTipline is critical because it has the potential to help stop the sexual abuse of a child, the continued spread of abusive images and videos, or other forms of exploitation,” said John Shehan, senior vice president of the Exploited Children Division and International Engagement. “Our hope for these updates is that we will be able to do more for the children, families, and members of the public who come to us looking for help.”

The primary funding for the form’s redesign was provided by a grant from the End Violence Fund's Safe Online investment portfolio, which focused on “strengthening systems and technology solutions to enable more effective and coordinated efforts to tackle online child sexual exploitation and abuse.” The CyberTipline operates in partnership with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and is consistently seeking opportunities to evolve the tools being used to protect children online. Work on the form redesign began in August 2022. 

cybertipline and end violence against children logos. teen boy holding laptop.

The End Violence Against Children Fund worked with NCMEC to fund the CyberTipline redesign.

In addition to a modernized look and feel, the form now gives more immediate access for victims and families to NCMEC support resources and collects additional information that can help NCMEC and law enforcement. It is also now available in Spanish and was designed to be more mobile-friendly. The form was tested with key stakeholders including survivors, caregivers, children, law enforcement, and members of the public.

“We’re grateful to EVAC for supporting this project,” said Shehan. “On the internet, crimes against children have no borders so this new form is poised to have a global impact on the state of child protection.” 

As the nation’s centralized reporting system for the online exploitation of children, the CyberTipline takes reports of suspected child sexual exploitation from tech companies that identify exploitation on their platforms, and from members of the public. NCMEC reviews reports to add additional information and makes them available to the appropriate law enforcement agency in the U.S. or overseas for potential investigation. In 2022, there were more than 32 million reports made to the CyberTipline, and NCMEC identified 49,000 urgent reports that involved a child in imminent danger.  

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