The Digital Rights Foundation (DRF) on Tuesday issued a report revealing the data regarding the first four months of operation of its Cyber Harassment Helpline.

According to the report, Facebook is the platform through which individuals faced the highest amount of harassment as the helpline received complains about fake profiles, non-consensual use of information, and blackmailing.

Complaints were also registered regarding unsolicited messages and hacked accounts or devices.

In the first four months since its launch, the helpline, which went live on December 1, received 513 individual complaints.

The complaints were made in the form of calls, emails and Facebook messages, most of which referred to harassment on Facebook.

The report adds that 535 calls were received by the helpline between December 1, 2016, to March 31, 2017, with the highest number of calls attended in January. Sixty-two per cent of the calls made were by women, whereas 37 per cent of the callers were men, it says.

Regarding the volume of male callers, DRF says it is a positive trend, as the non-profit organisation seeks to "encourage men to break stereotypes and open up about their own experiences of harassment."

The report states that nearly 42pc of the cases received by the helpline came from from Punjab. The helpline also got calls from Sindh (17.8pc), Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (4.7pc) and Balochistan (1.3pc)

Limited resources available to the Federal Investigation Agency's National Response Centre for Cyber Crimes (NR3C) has lead to delays in registration of cases related to cyber crime, the report highlights.

It recommends that FIA provide gender-sensitisation training to its staff and recruit female investigative officers.

The cyber harassment helpline is the first of its kind in Pakistan providing those facing online harassment “free, safe and confidential” environment to talk and register complaints.

The service aims to provide legal advice, digital security support, psychological counselling and a referral system to victims.

Opinion

Editorial

Post-flood economy
Updated 24 Sep, 2022

Post-flood economy

WITH a third of the country — especially Sindh and Balochistan — under water, over 33m people displaced, and...
Panadol shortage
24 Sep, 2022

Panadol shortage

FROM headaches to fever to bodily pain — paracetamol is used ubiquitously in Pakistan as the go-to remedy for most...
Star-struck cops
24 Sep, 2022

Star-struck cops

IN this age of selfies and social media, it is easy to get carried away in the presence of famous people, even if ...
Timely remorse
Updated 23 Sep, 2022

Timely remorse

The country needs more leaders, not rabble-rousers.
Miranda Warning
23 Sep, 2022

Miranda Warning

BEATINGS, rape, sleep deprivation, electric shocks, even waterboarding — the Punjab Police is notorious for...
Nuclear geopolitics
23 Sep, 2022

Nuclear geopolitics

TWO key international issues — Iran’s stand-off with the West over the former’s nuclear programme, and Russian...