The Online Safety Bill – Sector Support Roundtable

In September 2022, Open Rights Group convened a discussion between privacy and data protection experts and other civil society professionals exploring the nexus between privacy, protection from online abuse and freedom of expression.

THE ONLINE SAFETY BILL –
SECTOR SUPPORT
ROUNDTABLE
Summary Report
October 2022

1. On 27 September 2022, Open Rights Group convened a roundtable to discuss how the Online Safety Bill’s draft to date provides more cause for concern and fails to fulfill its mission of reducing harm experienced online.

2. Two particular issues – content moderation and encryption – were raised during the event.

3. Dr. Edina Harbinger, a Reader in law at Aston University, Birmingham and Alec Muffett, a network security expert, addressed attendees to provide an overview of the content moderation and surveillance of private messaging and encryption and the proposed Bill’s impact on these two issues.

4. Dr. Monica Horton, Open Rights Group’s freedom of expression policy manager, chaired the discussion with a range of civil society representatives in attendance, including:
Halaleh Taheri, Middle East Women and Society Organisation
Hera Hassan, Chayn
Hilary Watson, Glitch
Azfar Shafi, CAGE
Jun Pang, Liberty
Matthew Johnson, Runnymede Trust
Penny Wangari-J, Racial Justice Network
Carys, Stop the Scan Campaign, Racial Justice Network
Mallika Balakrishna, Migrants Organise
Zehrah Hasan, Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants
Diana Gheorghiu, Child Rights International Network
Jen Persson, Defend Digital Me
Ayesha Saran, Barrow Cadbury
Simmi Bhagri, Borkowski
Participant 15 (Anon)

The balance in the Bill

5. The chair summarised how since the dawn of the Internet, the sudden potential of increased access to content – which comes

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