New proposals urging law enforcement authorities, governments and ISPs to form a global partnership to stamp out child abuse websites have been released by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF).

The organisation has identified 2,775 sites that profit from child sex abuse images, a lot less than initially thought. Of these, 80 percent are considered to be fully commercial operations.

The organisation has been campaigning to remove these sites but as less than one percent are actually hosted in the UK, it has proved difficult to get international web hosts and ISPs to shut down or block them.

"This year we have highlighted what we believe is a manageable number worldwide of such [child sex abuse] websites. A co-ordinated global attack on these websites could get these horrific images removed from the web and those responsible investigated," Peter Robbins chief executive of the IWF said in a statement.

The organisation detailed a four-pronged attack that proposes a global joint public/private partnership to investigate, disrupt and remove the websites, as well as better co-ordination between IWF-related hotlines and the tech industry in order to quickly remove content when it is reported. The IWF also wants authorities to de-register domains associated with any kind of child sexual abuse, and hopes to develop a system that will protect unwitting surfers from accidental exposure to the disturbing content.

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