Colombia

Population

46,736,728

Population 0‑14

24.9%

Internet Users

60.9%

Facebook Users

24,000,000

Mobile Subscribers

50,800,000
* Statistics provided by CIA.gov, Internet World Stats and GSMA Intellligence

2009 - The Computadores para Educar (Computers for Schools) program is a large-scale national initiative operating throughout Colombia. The private and public sectors have banded together to refurbish old computers donated by private enterprise, install them in schools and train teachers in how to use them to teach specific subjects, the use of e-mail and navigating the Internet. In 2014, in with help from the Colombian government, the program donated 335,660 tablets for educational institutions, the largest acquisition for schools in the country at the time.

2006 - For primary and secondary-level education, the Ministry includes ICT in its Ten Year Plan 2006 – 2016. The Ministry recognizes the need for pedagogical renovation and the use of ICT in education, as well as the integration of technology into the education system.

2011 - The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology established Compartel, a programme aimed to provide broadband Internet connectivity to public institutions and community access centres throughout the country.

The project ICT for Development (ICT4D) was implemented by MAKAIA. The Project works with different organizations to offer ICT training to people with disabilities. The aim to reduce the opportunity access gap by providing them with tools to improve their living conditions and reducing the difficulties when using ICTs.

2012 The Ministry of Education has established an Office of Educational Innovation Using New Technology. Their aim is to strengthen teachers’ ICT skills and promote the development of innovative educational practices incorporating various modern technologies. In addition, the Office promotes and coordinates the production and distribution of relevant quality content for different levels of education.

On Safer Internet Day, the National Police and Google Colombia hosted a hangout, encouraging the safe and responsible use of the Internet. In addition, computer security experts from the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, the Ministry of Education and Red Papaz held talks and workshops focusing on topics such as trends in cybercrime, media reporting, child protection in a digital environment, digital learning, and more.

2014 - The Ministry of Education initiated the Centros de Innovacion Educativa (CIERs) (Educational Innovation Centers) project, which promotes regional capacity building for educational use of ICT to improve the quality of educational practices in institutions and system entities, contributing to reducing the gap between regions.

Centro Cibernético Policial

It is responsible for developing strategies, programs, projects and other activities in the field of criminal investigation of cyber crimes. An specialist department deals solely with online child sexual abuse, including grooming and the distribution of child pornography, as well as cyberbullying.

Colombia Aprende - La Red del Conocimiento

Is the virtual access point of the national educational community, was launched in 2002. Primary, secondary and higher education teachers have access to a vast number of educational resources, products and services through the site.

En TIC Confio

A project by the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, the website aims to promote confidence and security in the use of ICT, showcasing the productive and creative means of modern technologies, whilst teaching its respectful and responsible use.

Foro Generaciones Interactivas

Is a nonprofit organization comprising professionals from a number of fields, including academia, education and industry. Its mission is to promote the use of technology to improve people’s lives. It was founded in 2008 by Telefónica, the University of Navarra and the Inter-American Organization (OUI). The Forum seeks to understand the impact of technology on children aged between 6 - 18 in Latin America, to provide educational resources for that age group and to educate through its Train the Trainer program.

Fundación Renacer

Is the ECPAT Group representative for Colombia and exists to help the victims of sexual exploitation – whatever their age. The group works with the victims and helps them to leave unsafe situations, recover from addictions and educates them about achieving a stable family structure.

Innocence En Danger

This international NGO brings together activists, Internet specialists, policy makers and the media to raise awareness of the sexual exploitation of children online, and support child victims and their families.

Instituto Interamericano del Niño, la Niña y Adolescente (INN)

A specialized body of the Organization of American States (OAS) on children and adolescents policy that provides guidance to the different states on how they must assume protection.

INTERPOL

INTERPOL is the world’s largest international police organization, with 190 member countries. Its mission is to enable police forces to collaborate globally to fight crime in the Internet age. Three areas of focus are crimes against children (with a focus on internet crimes and travelling sex offenders), cybercrime and human trafficking.

Latin American Network of Educational Portals (La Red Latinoamericana de Portales Educativos – RELPE)

Formed in 2004 by an agreement of the Ministries of Education from sixteen Latin American countries, a network of educational portals, allowing the collaboration and sharing of educational content between the member countries. It also provides for the construction of standards and methodologies of processes to position the network as a benchmark in the region and the world on collaborative management of educational content.

Latin American Network of ICT and Education (Red Iberoamericana de TIC y Educación – RIATE)

This organization promotes bilateral or multilateral cooperation for development through the exchange of information, initiatives and projects that promote the integration of ICT in education in 21 countries.

MAKAIA

Is an organization which focus is the social and economic development of Latin America and the Caribbean. It promotes the institutional strengthening of civil society organizations, local authorities, other non-profit organizations and Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives.

Ministerio de Educación

It has a website that provides information on educational goals and details of the various changes to the system which are to be implemented over the next few years.

One Laptop per Child (OLPC)

A nonprofit organization launched by Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab, whose aim to empower the world’s poorest children through education by providing a low cost laptops.

Red de Sanción Social contra el Abuso Sexual Infantil

Was formed in 2005 in response to what was felt to be a dramatic increase in incidences of child sexual abuse. It aims to encourage members of society to play a key role in the prevention, reporting and detection of sexual exploitation and abuse. The Network also supplies educational materials to schools, to enable teachers to better recognize the signs of an abused child and to provide children with strategies to protect themselves. Similar materials are available to parents.

RedPaPaz

is a non-profit corporation that was created in February 2003 at the request of a group of parents and educators. Organized by educational institutions and parent associations, it works with public institutions to develop civil rights protection for children and adolescents.

Te Protejo

Is Colombia’s first hotline member of the INHOPE Foundation accepted on August 2012, has five partners: the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar ICBF (Colombian Institute of Family Welfare), Fundación Telefónica, Foro Generaciones Interactivas from Spain and RedPaPaz (administrator of the hotline). Te Protejo works in hand with Colombian National Police to fight against child sexual abuse material.

The Interactive Generations Forum

A nonprofit organization which mission is to promote the use of technology to improve people’s lives. It was founded in 2008 by Telefónica, the University of Navarra and the Inter-American Organization (OUI). The Forum seeks to understand the impact of technology on children aged between 6 - 18 in Latin America, to provide educational resources for that age group and to educate through its own programs.

The Network for the Rights of Children and Adolescents to the Safe and Responsible Use of New ICTs - RedNATIC

It comprises a joint group of organizations from across Latin America. Its member organizations assume as shared the principles of the statements contained in the Theoretical Framework for the rights of children and teens to a Safe and Responsible Use of ICT.

Tus 10 Comportamientos Digitales

is the result of the consolidated efforts of a working group of new technologies initiated by RedPaPaz in 2008 with the aim of promoting the safe and responsible use of ICT in childhood and adolescents, ‘Your 10 Digital Behaviors’ unifies in a single place the expected behavior of a good digital citizen.

Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT)

This international partnership was formed in 2003 by law enforcement agencies, NGOs and industry leaders. It aims to protect children from online sexual abuse, with the objectives of making the Internet safer, locating and helping at-risk children and holding perpetrators to account.

Submission for the preparation of the report by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on “Information and communication technology and child sexual exploitation” (2015)

Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention, EU Kids Online, Data and Society Research Institute, Child Rights International network and the International Child Redress Project.

This collaborative document aims to contribute to current discussion regarding the child sexual exploitation in relation to information and communications technologies

Committee on the Rights of the Child Reviews 12 countries’ Child Rights Records (2015)

OHCHR

This report reviews 12 States’ actions based on the obligations to the Convention of the Rights of the Child and its optional protocols

Protecting Children from Cybercrime (2015)

Simone dos Santos Lemos Fernandes, Legal Consultant, Global Forum on Law Justice and Development (GFLJD), Legal Vice Presidency, World Bank

This report studies different Latin American countries’ legislation on the prevention and combat of violence against children on the internet. It also identifies gaps and good practices on the protection of children from cybercrime.

Global Research Project: A Global Landscape of Hotlines Combating Child Sexual Abuse Material on the Internet and an Assessment of Shared Challenges (2015)

Melissa Stroebe, Stacy Jeleniewski, PhD

This report examines hotlines combating Internet-facilitated Child Sexual Abuse Material.

Students, Computer and Learnin: Making the connection (2015)

Andrea Schleicher and Francesco Avvisati

Summary on the statistics of ICT among young people in Colombia.

The commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children in Latin America (2014)

ECPAT International

This report studies the different forms of sexual exploitation of children inLatin America. Furthermore, it highlights the new emerging trends and how Latin america is addressing this phenomena

Reducing violence against children, with special focus on sexual exploitation of children and child sex tourism. (2014)

The Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT

This is a program by the Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT, which objective is to reduce violence against children, with special attention to child sexual exploitation and child sex tourism.

Colombia 2014 Findings on the worst Forms of Child Labor (2014)

United States Department of Labor

A report on the findings on the worst forms of child labor in Colombia. It talks about prevalence, legal framework, law enforcement, government efforts and it gives suggestion to the government on how to combat it.

Children’s Rights in the Digital Age (2014)

A. Third, D. Bellerose, U. Dawkins, E. Keltie, K. Pihl

This study found unequal access to digital media among youth from 16 countries, among other key findings on children's digital usage.

U.S.- Colombia Information and Communications Technology (2014)

Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs

A mall report on the status Colombia’s ICT situation with the cooperation of the US Government

Reducing violence agains children, with special focus on sexual exploitation of children and child sex tourism. (2014)

The Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT

This is a program by the Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT, which objective is to reduce violence against children, with special attention to child sexual exploitation and child sex tourism.

Colombia (2013)

OpenNet Initiative (ONI)

This is a profile of Colombia on the use of Internet and its impact in its society.

Child Pornography: Model Legislation & Global Review (2013)

International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children

This report is based on research of child pornography legislation in different nations of the world where this issues is part of their national agend

E-Governing in Latin America: A Review of the Success in Colombia, Uruguay, and Panama (2013)

Miguel A. Porrúa

Document on the improvement in the economy of Colombia, Panama and Uruguay, after the introduction of ICTs.

ICT IN EDUCATION IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN A regional analysis of ICT integration and e-readiness (2012)

UNESCO Institute for Statistics

UNESCO Institute for Statistics, based on survey responses from 38 countries reveals the extent to which factors such as education policy, teacher training, and infrastructure drive or hamper the integration of ICTs in schools.

Digital technologies meet the challenges of inclusive education in Latin America: some examples of good practices (2012)

NU. CEPAL, European Commission

The publication includes a series of studies on policies and programs to integrate digital technologies into education in various Latin American countries. The document also presents eight cases of good practices in ICTs that can be used in the Latin American school system to contribute to inclusion and reduce social inequalities.

Mapping Digital Media: Colombia (2012)

Jimena Zuluaga ans Maria Paula Martinez

This document makes an explores the digital media in Colombia and its aims to enlighten policymakers, activists, academics and standard-setters so they can builds policy capacity and encourage stakeholders to participate in and influence change.

Colombia 2012 Human Rights Report (2012)

Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor

This is a report revise Human Rights ion Colombia during the year 2012

Small World, Big Responsibility: The UK’s role in the global trade in children (2012)

Erika Hall, Phillippa Lei

This report preset information on the different forms of child exploitation. Its purpose is to raise awareness to this global issue.

Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and the Internet (2011)

Inter American Children’s Instirute

This is a report to the Organization of American States on the situation of the member states in the issue of commercial sexual exploitation and the impact of internet in their lives.

Computers in Schools: Why governments Should do their Homework (2011)

Inter-American Development Bank

This chapter is a comparison of the Latin American governments include ICT in their educational programs.

UNICEF Annual Report for Colombia (2010)

UNICEF

This is a report by Unicef on the Colombian situation as affecting children and women. It examines the significant progress and problems up to date.

2008 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Colombia (2009)

United States Department of Labor

This report present the incidences, law enforcement and government policies and programs in 2008 by the Colombian government in its effort to combat the worst form of Child Labor

The Use and Misuse of Computers in Education - Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Colombia (2009)

Felipe Barrera-Osorio

This paper was produced for the World Bank Human Development Network Education Team to see what was the impact of the program ‘Computers for Education’

Los desafíos de las TIC para el cambio educativo (2009)

Roberto Carneiro, Juan Carlos Toscano and Tamara Díaz

This is a collective Inter-American educational program which goals are projected until the year 2021. It analyses the challenges of the new era of education and the importance of incorporating ICT on it.

2008 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Colombia (2009)

United States Department of Labor

This report present the incidences, law enforcement and government policies and programs in 2008 by the Colombian government in its effort to combat the worst form of Child Labor

Colombian e-Citizen (2008)

ECDL Foundation

This is a report on a survey made in Colombia to measure the effectiveness of the project e-ciudadano (e-Citizen).

Combating Child Sex Tourism: Question and Answers (2008)

ECPAT

This is a general information document on Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children. It also gives an overview of the global situation.

Digital Divide among Low Income People in Colombia, Mexico and Peru (2008)

Luis H. Gutierrez R and Luis F. Gamboa N.

This Research explores the indices of ICT usage in Colombia, Mexico and Peru and its impact in society

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for development of small and medium-sized exporters in Latin America: Colombia (2005)

Andre Kublik Walter

This document explains the situation of Colombia on having access to the ICT in comparison to the rest of the world and where it will be in the near future.

Report of the Colombian State on the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action (1995) and the outcome of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly (2000) (2004)

United Nations

This is a report on the Colombian situation on the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action of 1995 and the outcome of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly in 2000

This section contains details of the country’s laws as they relate to sexual offenses, children and the use of the Internet in the commission of criminal activity. Where possible, sentence details have been given, including whether an increased custodial penalty is imposed where the victim is a child.

The age of consent in Colombia is fourteen according to Article 208 of the National Penal Code, with the age of majority attained at eighteen. The age of consent for marriage (with parental consent) is fourteen for females and sixteen for males.

  • Article 188C, Penal Code. Trafficking in Children and Adolescents. This Article states that anyone is involved in any act or transaction where a child or young person is sold, delivered or trafficked, including for sexual purposes, for a cash price or consideration to a person or group, will receive a prison term of between 30 and 60 years, plus a fine of between 1,000 and 2,000 monthly minimum salaries. The consent of the victim or his/her parents does not constitute grounds for an exemption. The penalty will be increased by one third to one half where the victim becomes physically or mentally affected, temporarily or permanently, or where the offender is in a position of trust or authority over the victim, among other criteria.
  • Article 205, Penal Code. Rape. States that where sexual intercourse takes place as a result of the use of violence the offender may be sentenced to a prison term of between twelve and 20 years.
  • Article 206, Penal Code. Violent Sexual Act. States that anyone who commits a sexual act through the use of violence is liable to imprisonment for between eight and sixteen years.
  • Article 207, Penal Code. Sexual Act with One Unable to Resist. This section states that it is an offense to have sexual intercourse with someone who is unable to consent as a result of physical or mental disability. The penalty for this offense is between twelve and 20 years’ imprisonment. If sexual intercourse did not take place but a sexual act occurred, the penalty is between eight and sixteen years’ imprisonment.
  • Article 208, Penal Code. Sexual Abuse of a Minor. States that the penalty for sexually abusing a minor under the age of fourteen is between twelve and 20 years’ imprisonment.
  • Article 209, Penal Code. Sexual Acts with Children under Fourteen. Imposes a penalty of between nine and thirteen years’ imprisonment for anyone who performs any sexual acts, not including full penetration with a child under the age of fourteen, or in their presence.
  • Article 211, Penal Code. Aggravating Circumstances. Increases the penalties detailed in Articles 208 and 209 by one third to one half when the offense was committed jointly by two or more persons. The same applies if the perpetrator was in a position of trust or authority over the victim; the victim contracted a sexually transmitted disease as a result of the offense; the victim is under the age of twelve, or the offense resulted in a pregnancy.
  • Article 213, Penal Code. Promotion of Prostitution. Defines the offense as to promote the prostitution of another person for a financial profit and/or with the intent to satisfy the sexual desire of another person. The penalty for procuration is between ten and 22 years’ imprisonment plus a fine of between 66 to 750 monthly minimum salaries.
  • Article 213A, Penal Code. Procuration of Minors. States that where anyone organizes, facilitates or participates in any way in the prostitution of a minor under the age of eighteen, a penalty of fourteen to 25 years’ imprisonment will apply, in addition to a fine of between 67 and 750 monthly minimum salaries.
  • Article 216, Penal Code. Aggravating Circumstances. Increases the penalties detailed in Article 213 and 213A by one third to one half if the victim is under the age of fourteen, amongst other aggravating circumstances.
  • Article 217A, Penal Code. Creating Demand for Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Minors Under the Age of Eighteen. This Article states that anyone who, directly or through a third person, requests or demands sexual intercourse or other sexual acts with a minor under the age of eighteen years for payment or promise thereof, or any other kind of retribution, will be sentenced to between fourteen and 25 years’ imprisonment. The victim’s consent is irrelevant to any criminal responsibility. The penalty shall be increased by one third to one half if the victim is under the age of fourteen; the offender is a domestic or foreign tourist or traveler, or if the offense was committed by a member of an organized illegal and armed group.
  • Article 218, Penal Code. Child Pornography. Imposes a penalty of imprisonment for between ten and 20 years plus a fine of between 1500 to 1,500 monthly minimum salaries for anyone who photographs, films, records, produces, disseminates, provides, sells, buys, possesses, transports, exhibits, stores or transmits by any means, depictions of sexual activity involving a minor under the age of eighteen years. The same penalty applies to anyone who uploads any child pornography to Internet databases, with or without the intent to gain a financial profit.
  • Article 219, Penal Code. Sex Tourism. Defines the offense as to direct, organize or promote tourist activities that include the sexual use of children. The penalty for this offense is between four and eight years’ imprisonment, which is increased by one half if the victim is under the age of twelve.
  • Article 219A, Penal Code. Use or Facilitation of Media to Provide Sexual Activities with Person under the Age of Eighteen Years. States that the use or facilitation of traditional mail, global information networks, phones or any media to obtain, solicit, offer or facilitate contact or activity for sexual contact with minors under the age of eighteen years is a criminal offense, punishable with imprisonment for between ten and fourteen years. The offense is also punishable by a fine of between 67 and 750 monthly minimum salaries. This will be increased by one half if the victim is under the age of fourteen.

In 2001, the government issued Law 679 which laid down regulations aimed at counteracting and preventing the exploitation of children, child pornography and sex tourism. The Act details the following key points:

  • Article 4. Committee of experts. States that within a month of the enactment of the Act, the Colombian Family Welfare Institute would form a commission of legal and ICT experts with the aim of identifying the ways in which global information and telecommunications networks are used for the purposes of sexual exploitation. The Commission will propose technical initiatives such as the implementation of filtering and blocking software relating to content which is deemed harmful to minors. The proposals will be submitted to the government within four months of commission with the intention to further develop the law.
  • Article 5. Report of the Commission. The government, in conjunction with the Committee on Telecommunications Regulation, will adopt the necessary measures to prevent minors from accessing pornographic material online and to prevent the sexual exploitation of children through global communications networks. The regulations are to be issued within six months of the date of this Act.
  • Article 6. Self-Regulatory system. States that the Ministry of Communications will promote and encourage self-regulation in the management and utilization of global information networks. Codes of conduct are to be agreed within one year of the date of this Act.
  • Article 7. Prohibitions. States that service providers, managers and users of global information networks may not host images, text, documents or audiovisual files on their own site, directly or indirectly involving sexual activity with minors. Also prohibits the hosting of pornography (especially videos and images) if there are indications that the subjects photographed or filmed are minors. It is illegal to host links to sites that contain pornographic material containing minors.
  • Article 8. Duty to report. Without prejudice to the obligation of reporting that falls on all citizens of Colombia, suppliers, managers and users of global information networks are obliged to report any criminal act against minors to the authorities, including the dissemination of pornography to minors. They are also obliged to use all technical means possible to prevent the dissemination of child pornography. They must refrain from using the network to disseminate child pornography. ISPs are obliged to provide blocking mechanisms through which users can protect themselves and/or their children from accessing material which is illegal or harmful to minors.
  • Article 10. Administrative sanctions. Failure to adhere to the obligations laid out in the preceding Articles renders the ISPs liable to fines of up to 100 times the statutory minimum wage and/or the suspension or removal of the offending website.
  • Article 22. Adult video tax. This section states that anyone renting an X-rated, adult video must pay a tax of 5% of the rental cost. The proceeds of the tax are to be used to finance programs to prevent and combat the sexual exploitation of children and child pornography.

In Colombia, the threats to children on the Internet to come primarily from sex tourism, which (although outlawed) is advertised online both inside and outside of the country’s borders.

2009 - UNICEF played an important role in the formulation and passage of Laws 1329 and 1336 of 2009 against exploitation, use in pornography, and sexual tourism involving children and adolescents. In addition, 5,437 functionaries of the National Family Welfare System, military personnel, police, and tourism operators participated in training sessions on these laws.

2013 - Interpol worked with the the National Police Cyber Center to conduct Operation Purity II, which consisted of 109 simultaneous raids in ten countries including Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Spain, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. They seized a total of 6,066 digital devices with suspected child pornography content: specifically, photographic images and video content of a sexually explicit nature involving minors.

2014 - Colombia has joined the Virtual Global Taskforce (VGT). By partnering they seek to develop necessary policies, and methods to protect children from online sexual exploitation. Besides raising awareness, preventing sexual abuses and investigating child abuse cases.

The National Police launched a free application called Protectio. It is designed to shut down websites and chatrooms when it identifies phrases usually used by child abusers to induce children.

2015 - Colombia participated on the 16th Europol Combating Online Sexual Exploitation of Children (COSEC) course on combating the online sexual exploitation of children on the internet. The ten-day course offered lectures and training to enhance national efforts to combat the sexual abuse of children online.