Croatia

Population

4,464,844

Population 0‑14

14.4%

Internet Users

75.0%

Facebook Users

1,800,000

Mobile Subscribers

4,800,000
* Statistics provided by CIA.gov, Internet World Stats and GSMA Intellligence

2001 - A major part of the government’s Information and Communication Technology in the Strategy of Development of the Republic of Croatia is dedicated to the Croatian youth and children. On of the main objectives of the strategy is to implement ICT in primary and secondary schools to enable young people to understand the basis of 21st century technology. The objective includes establishment of free Internet connections for all education institutions and installment multimedia services in classrooms.

2006 - Center for Missing and Exploited Children (CNZD) was established to protect children from online sexual exploitation and abuse, as well as to prevent the spread of child pornography, pedophilia, and other forms of online abuse. Through their Internet Safety in School program, the CNZD has been holding lectures about Internet safety at local schools. Furthermore, CNZD made Osijek the first town in Croatia to have every primary school equipped with servers controlling Internet content and filtering websites through the Safer Internet in Schools project.

2007 - The government of Croatia signed the eSEE Agenda Plus 2007 - 2012 together with seven other Eastern European countries in October, 2007. The member countries pledge to strengthen innovation and investment in ICT in education, develop digital educational content and services, invest in the ICT infrastructure of their national educational institutions, reflect the increased use of modern technologies in a revised curriculum, and make ICT curricula mandatory on all educational levels. The government’s subsequent e-Croatia 2007 Program has the overall goal of increasing the level of information services provided by the government to its citizens and the economy. The program is divided into two main areas: infrastructure (including broadband and information security) and individual projects, such as e-Justice, e-Business, and e-Education. The state is continuing its efforts to increase the country’s competitiveness by introducing ICT in all aspects of government-provided services in a bid to enable its equal participation in the knowledge society.

2010 - The aim of the Education Sector Development Plan 2005-2010, adopted by the Croatian Government in June 2005, was to direct educational policy toward the improvement of the education system. A specific priority area was to increase the use of ICT. By 2008, all teachers were envisaged to have acquired a basic level of ICT competencies. The 2010 National Curriculum Framework, adopted by the Croatian Government in 2010, includes all the key competences recommended by the European Reference Framework, including digital competence. One of the subject’s objectives is to help all pupils develop a critical attitude about the issues related to information validity as well as ethical and legal principles of the interactive use of ICT. CNZD launched the Web Detectives program, teaching primary school students how to stay safe online through interactive lessons held at school. Furthermore, CNZD’s SINI (Safe on the Internet) software application was created to control the content when browsing the web.

2011 - Though Net in Schools project, initiated by the Ministry of Education, Science, and Sport, T-Hrvatski Telekom has provided free internet access to over 2,600 elementary and secondary schools in Croatia since 2001. Over half a million students benefitted from this project in the 2009/2010 school year. Partners in Learning (Suradnici u učenju), a Croatian teacher association, promotes a proper and purposeful use of educational technology in all areas of education, launched the Safer Internet for Children campaign, promoting responsible and safe use of the Internet in the Framework of the international Safer Internet Day (SID). The CNZD published a computer game educating children about Internet safety and run a campaign for children to teach them how to protect themselves from online molestation and sexual exploitation.

2012 - The government published a Strategy for Broadband Development in the Republic of Croatia for 2012 – 2015. The main values achieved through the implementation of this strategy include infrastructure development for the provision of public services, such as e-government, e-health, e-education, e-business and others. As well as support to the development of rural areas, areas of special state concern and business zones in the Republic of Croatia.

2013 - CARNet began participating in Child Online Safety Project, where it provides support in the implementation of this project in cooperation with the Education and Teacher Training Agency, Croatian Personal Data Protection Agency and a series of local institutions and organisations. During the project, teachers will develop and apply one part of school curriculum regarding the child online safety within the Croatian Qualifications Framework.

2014 - To celebrate Safer Internet Day 2014, five schools in Croatia undertook Internet safety activities designed to raise awareness within their local communities. Partners in Learning (supported by Microsoft and other industry partners in Croatia) provides professional development for teachers and contains a prominent Internet safety section. CNZD and partners from Bosnia and Herzegovina have organized an online quiz for children and have produced a leaflet which contains tips and advice for safer Internet use. Vipnet, private mobile operator in Croatia, launched internal program Do the Right Thing, where employees volunteer in initiatives that promote responsible and safe use of the internet advanced technology. The company continues to educate children, youth and their parents through the EU project Safer Internet Center Croatia. This is a project that will last until 2018 and enable for dedicated and systematic approach in solving the problem of children being harassed on the internet.

2015 - European Commission launched the Assessment of Transversal Skills 2020 (ATS2020) project in 11 EU countries, which will run through 2018. The project develops comprehensive learning model to enhance student transversal, 21st century skills across diverse EU national curricula, including the provision of teachers with modern approaches and innovative tools for the assessment of these skills. CARNet, Zagreb is one of the 17 international partners of ATS 2020 that will be implementing the project in Croatian schools.

2016 - The Government of Croatia has drafted the Strategy of Broadband Development in the Republic of Croatia for the period of 2016 - 2020, which aims to bring high speed internet to all. The organizer of the Safer Internet Day, the CNZD, with the support of the European Commission and domestic partners Microsoft Croatia and Vipnet conducted a lecture via Skype on the subject of safer and smarter use of the internet, with the overall goal of educating youth about responsible use of technology. Center for Safer Internet Croatian has expanded a national platform to launch a series of services for a safer Internet at the Safer Internet Day. The ultimate beneficiaries of this project are the children, parents, teachers, or anyone who works with children.

CARNet (Croatian Academic and Research Network)

With a wide-ranging remit, one of the aspects of CARNet’s work is to provide a portal for schools which also contains information for parents and teachers, including guidelines on Internet safety. It contains some useful advice on online security and tools for protecting IT systems.

Center for Missing and Exploited Children (CNZD)

Established in 2006, the CNZD works towards the protection children from sexual exploitation and abuse through the Internet, and aims to stop the dissemination of pedophilia and other forms of abuse associated with the Internet. The site includes a hotline where users can report inappropriate content, and educational sections for children and parents alike.

Child Protection Center of Zagreb

The aim of the Child protection center of Zagreb is to provide effective and systematic help to traumatized children and families (abused and neglected children, families affected by war etc.). It also performs a research function and has conducted a study into the exposure of children to abuse via the Internet. The Center has also produced a publication on cyberbullying, aimed at parents and educators.

Croatian Safer Internet Center

The organization promotes a safer and better use of the internet and mobile technologies among children and young people.

GSMA Europe

This industry association represents the interests of European mobile network operators. The group engages in lobbying in areas such as children’s use of mobile phones, privacy, digital inclusion and reducing the digital gender gap. In 2008, the organization formed a mobile alliance against child sexual abuse content.

International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Europe

The ITU is is the UN agency for ICTs. Areas of focus in Europe include improving E-accessibility in Central and Eastern Europe, transitioning Europe to digital broadcasting, and sharing best practices for implementing e-applications.

Internet Governance Forum

The IGF was founded by the UN in 2006 to serve as a discussion platform for internet governance policy issues. It brings together various stakeholders to determine best practices for internet policy. Past areas of focus include cybersecurity, human rights, inclusivity and openness.

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.

Ministry of Science, Education, Sports (MZOS)

The Ministry is in charge of administrative and other activities relating to development of curriculum, development of scientific research, and qualification of children, youth and adults for acquiring technical knowledge, and skills, and to the activities of associations in the field.

National CERT

A project established by CARNet’s, National Cert is dedicated to working on Internet security. It contains some useful advice on online security and tools for protecting IT systems.

Partners in Learning (Suradnici u učenju)

The Partners in Learning Croatia website contains information about current and past Safer Internet Day activities, resources for teachers, and professional development such as webinars and a digital magazine.

Skole.hr

An initiative by CARNet, this portal is designed for students and teachers wanting to use technology as an aid in learning, teaching, class preparation, reinforcing the knowledge they acquired from school materials, and everyone who wishes to cooperate with colleagues all over Croatia and exchange knowledge and digital course materials.

ZaMirNET

A non-profit organization that is dedicated towards developing civil society, promoting a culture of peace and the idea of sustainable development in Croatia and the region. Their programs include: strategic use of ICT, non formal education, networking, policy advocacy, and provide support to independent media initiatives

A Survey on the Transposition of Directive 2011/93/EU on Combating Sexual Abuse and Sexual Exploitation of Children and Child Pornography (2016)

Together Against Sexual Exploitation of Children

The study examines how seven key provisions of Directive 2011/93/EU on the fight against sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children and child pornography have been adopted by the 27 European Union (EU) Member States bound by the Directive.

How parents of young children manage digital devices at home: the role of income, education and parental style (2015)

Livingstone, Sonia, Mascheroni, Giovanna, Dreier, Michael, Chaudron, Stephane, Lagae, Kaat

The report compares strategies of parental mediation on the internet according to levels of parental education and household income. The aim was to inform policy-makers and practitioners on how to approach parental guidance and awareness raising.

Education and Training Monitor: Croatia (2015)

Directorate-General of Education and Culture (DG EAC)

Status of education and teacher training in ICT in Croatia

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.

Combatting Child Sexual Abuse (2015)

Petra Jeney

The study provides an overview of existing legislation at European Union, Member State and the international level related to online child sexual abuse, as well as the role of law enforcement agencies in combatting child sexual abuse online and other governmental and private sector initiatives.

The impact of internet and new media on the occurrence of violence against children in Europe and Cyprus (2015)

Rosella Sala

This document demonstrate that countries lack of expertise on child sexual exploitation and struggle combating this issue by their own. It suggests to establish an international legal framework to prosecute offenders and protect children.

Children's Use of Online Technologies in Europe (2014)

K. Ólafsson, S. Livingstone, L. Haddon

This report reviews recent research on children’s use of internet and mobile technologies identified by the EU Kids Online network.

Final recommendations for policy (2014)

O’Neill, B., Staksrud, E

Combining all the EU Kids Online policy guidance into one resource, this report provides more than 30 proposed actions for making the Internet safer for children.

Global Alliance Against Child Abuse Online: Croatia (2014)

European Comission

Report on Croatia's commitment to stop Child Sexula Abuse Online

eSchoo4S, Croatia Country Report (2014)

eSchool4S

Baseline study on the state of innovation in the thematic fields of the eSchool4S network, which gives a comprehensive up-to-date overview on the current status of innovation in the thematic fields of the eSchoo4S network in Croatia.

Zero to Eight - Young Children and Their Internet Use (2013)

Holloway, D., Green, L., and Livingstone, S. with members of the EU Kids Online network,

This report reviews a number of other studies and provides recommendations as to how younger children can be protected from online risks.

Risks and safety on the internet: Comparing Brazilian and European children (2013)

Barbosa, A., O’Neill, B., Ponte, C., Simões, J.A., Jereissati, T.,

This study compares the results of the survey of Brazilian children and their parents/guardians, carried out by the Brazilian Internet Steering Committee. Using the same methodology as the EU Kids Online research, the results from Brazil are compared with those from Europe.

EU Kids Online: National perspectives. (2012)

Leslie Haddon, Sonia Livingstone and the EU Kids Online network

This report summarizes the Internet experiences of children in the 33 participating EU Kids Online countries and includes eight countries which have not appeared in previous reports

EU Kids Online: National perspectives (2012)

Haddon, L., Livingstone, S., EU Kids Online Network

This report summarizes the Internet experiences of children in the 33 participating EU Kids Online countries and includes eight countries which have not appeared in previous reports.

Survey of Schools: ICT in Education, Country Profile: Croatia (2012)

European Schoolnet and University of Liège

Status of ICT implementation in Croatian schools as of 2012

ICT in the Education of the Balkan Countries (2010)

Dr. Rossita Penkova, Dr. Violeta Mircheva, Nikolina Tsvetkova, Mirena Legurska

This is a comprehensive document on the situation of the ICT in education in the Balkan countries.

Education on Online Safety in Schools in Europe (2009)

Eurydice

The study covers 30 European countries and provides information on whether online safety is taught and how it is taught in schools within the participating countries.

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 simple majority in Croatia is eighteen. The age of consent for sexual activity is fourteen and the age of consent for marriage is eighteen, although a court can permit marriage for persons of or over the age of sixteen.

Croatia has signed, ratified and entered into law the Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime (November 2001).

  • Article 188, Criminal Code. Rape. Defines the offense of rape as coercing another person by force or by threat of immediate attack upon his life or limb, or the life or limb of a person close to him, to sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act. The offense is punishable by imprisonment for one to ten years. The following aggravating circumstances raise the penalty of imprisonment to three to fifteen years: the offense was committed in a particularly a particularly cruel or humiliating way; on the same occasion a number of perpetrators perform a number of acts of sexual intercourse or equivalent sexual acts against the same victim. The same penalty applies if the victim dies as a result of the offense, serious bodily injury is inflicted on the victim or his health is severely impaired, the female victim falls pregnant, or the victim is a juvenile (person between the age of fourteen and eighteen). Where the aggravating circumstances cause the death, bodily injuries or pregnancy of the victim, a minimum penalty of five years’ imprisonment will apply. The Article also states that a minimum sentence of five years’ imprisonment will also apply where the rape of a juvenile was committed in a particularly a particularly cruel or humiliating way, if the juvenile victim was raped repeatedly by more than one offender on the same occasion, if the victim dies as a result of the offense, serious bodily injury is inflicted on the victim or his health is severely impaired, or the female juvenile victim falls pregnant.
  • Article 189, Criminal Code Sexual Intercourse with a Helpless Person. Imposes a penalty of imprisonment for one to eight years for anyone who performs sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act with another person, taking advantage of the victim’s mental illness, temporary mental disorder, mental deficiency or some other more severe mental disturbance or any other condition which prevents such a person from resisting. The following aggravating circumstances raise the penalty of imprisonment to one to ten years: the offense was committed in a particularly a particularly cruel or humiliating way; on the same occasion a number of perpetrators perform a number of acts of sexual intercourse or equivalent sexual acts against the same victim. The same penalty applies if the victim dies as a result of the offense, serious bodily injury is inflicted on the victim or his health is severely impaired, or the female victim falls pregnant. Where the aggravating circumstances cause the death, bodily injuries or pregnancy of the victim, the prison sentence will increase to a three to fifteen year term.
  • Article 190, Criminal Code. Sexual Intercourse by Duress. States that anyone who forces another person to sexual intercourse or to an equivalent sexual act with a serious threat of serious harm will be punished by imprisonment for three months to five years.
  • Article 191 (1), Criminal Code. Sexual Intercourse by Abuse of Position. Whoever, by abusing his/her position, induces another person to submit to sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act and where that person is in a position dependent towards him/her due to harsh material, family, social, health or any other conditions or circumstances shall be punished by imprisonment for three months to three years.
  • Article 191 (2), Criminal Code. Sexual Intercourse by Abuse of Position. A teacher, educator, parent, adopter, guardian, step­father, step­mother or any other person who, by using his/her status or relationship towards a juvenile who is entrusted to him/her for education, upbringing, custody or care, performs sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act upon such a person, shall be punished by imprisonment for six months to five years.
  • Article 192, Criminal Code. Sexual Intercourse with a Child. This Article constitutes that it is a criminal offense to perform sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act on a child (person under the age of fourteen). The offense is punishable by imprisonment for one to eight years. Anyone who coerces a child by force or by threat of immediate attack upon his life or limb, or the life or limb of a person close to him, to sexual intercourse or an equivalent sexual act, is liable to an increased penalty of three to fifteen years’ imprisonment; the same applies to anyone who has sexual intercourse with a helpless child. Anyone who abuses his position to perform sexual intercourse or an equivalent act with a child is liable to imprisonment for one to ten years. The Article also states that anyone who commits any of the aforementioned offenses in a particularly cruel or humiliating way or if on the same occasion a number of perpetrators perform a number of acts of sexual intercourse or equivalent acts against the same victim will render the offender liable to a minimum term of five years’ imprisonment. Where any of the aforementioned offenses lead to the death of the child victim, cause serious bodily injury or severely impair the child’s health, the female child is left pregnant, the perpetrator will be punished by imprisonment for not less than five years or by long-term imprisonment.
  • Article 193, Criminal Code. Lewd Acts. States that anyone who, in the cases of Articles 188 to 191 of this Code, does not attempt to commit a criminal offense and only commits a lewd act, is liable to imprisonment for three months to three years. Anyone who does not attempt to commit sexual intercourse with a child (Article 192) but only commits a lewd act , or anyone who commits a lewd act with reference to Article 188 to 191 of this Code, is liable to imprisonment for six months to five years.
  • Article 194, Criminal Code. Satisfying Lust in the Presence of a Child or Juvenile. Imposes a penalty of imprisonment for three months to three years for anyone who, in the presence of a child or juvenile, performs acts aimed at satisfying his own lust or the lust of a third person, or whoever induces a child to submit to such acts in his presence or in the presence of a third person.
  • Article 195, Criminal Code. Pandering. Defines the offense of pandering a child or juvenile, which is punishable by imprisonment for a term between three months to three years. The same penalty applies to anyone who, for profit, organizes or assists another person in offering sexual services. The Article also states anyone who, for profit, by force, threat to use force, or by deceit forces or induces another to offer sexual services will be punished by imprisonment for six months to five years. Anyone who, for profit, commits the two aforementioned offenses against a juvenile is liable to an aggravated penalty of imprisonment for one to eight years; where the victim is a child, this will be further increased to one to ten years’ imprisonment. The offense of organizing or assisting a child in offering sexual services is punishable by imprisonment for three months to three years.
  • Article 196, Criminal Code. Abuse of Child or Juveniles in Pornography. This Article states that it is an offense to use a child or juvenile for the purpose of making pictures, audiovisual material or other objects of a pornographic nature, or to possess, import, sell, distribute or present such material, or to induce such persons to take part in pornographic shows. The offense is punishable by imprisonment for one to five years. The objects and means designed for or used for commission of this crime will be forfeited and objects which were made by commission of a crime will be seized and destroyed.
  • Article 197(1), Criminal Code. Introducing Pornography to Children. States that anyone who sells, gifts, displays, or makes accessible by public presentation or in any other way anything written or printed or any picture, drawing, audio and video production or any other things of pornographic content to a child, or shows a pornographic performance to a child, will be fined or imprisoned for a term not exceeding one year. The objects and means designed for or used in the commission of this crime will be forfeited and objects which were made by commission of a crime will be seized and destroyed.
  • Article 197(2), Criminal Code. Child Pornography on Computer System or Network. Defines the offense of using a computer system or network to offer, distribute, or obtain for himself or for someone else, pornographic contents that shows children or juveniles in a sexually explicit behavior or that are focused on their sexual organs. The penalty for this offense is imprisonment from one to ten years. The same penalty applies to anyone who possesses such contents on a computer system or on computer storage media. The Article also states that anyone who, through a computer system, network or media for storage of computer data, makes available to a child pictures, audio-visual contents or other objects of pornographic content, will be liable to a fine or to imprisonment not exceeding three years. Special devices, means, computer programs or data used for or adjusted for the perpetration of the aforementioned offenses will be forfeited.
  • Article 199, Criminal Code. Insult. States that anyone who insults another person will be punished by a fine of up to 100 daily incomes or imprisonment for up to three months. Where the offense is committed through the press, radio, television, in front of a number of persons, at a public assembly or in another way in which the insult becomes accessible to a large number of persons, an increased penalty of a fine of up to 150 daily incomes or imprisonment not exceeding six months will apply. Where the victim returns the insult, the court may remit punishment for both parties.
  • Article 200, Criminal Code. Defamation. Imposes a penalty of imprisonment for up to six months or a fine of up to 150 daily incomes for anyone who, in relation to another person, asserts or disseminates a falsehood which can damage the victim’s honor or reputation. Where the offense was committed through the press, radio, television, in front of a number of persons, at a public assembly or in another way in which the insult becomes accessible to a large number of persons, an increased penalty of a fine or imprisonment not exceeding one year will apply. The Article also states that where the offender proves the truth of his allegations or if he believed the disseminated matter to be true on reasonable grounds, he will not be punished for defamation but insult (Article 199).

2009 - The Croatian Academic and Research Network - (CARNet) established the Croatian Computer Emergency Response Team (nacionalniCERT), which provides specific information for parents in its guide about online safety. Any institution of primary, secondary and higher education can be a member of CARNet. Through the membership, they can be constantly connected to the Internet and have the right to use CARNet services. Institutions use various technologies and speeds, depending on the available infrastructure of the provider, their needs, market changes etc. In order to become a member of CARNet, each institution must send an application to the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports for the review.

The Ministry of Interior of Croatia launched a project “Capacity Building in the Field of Fight against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse of Children, and on Police Assistance to Vulnerable Crime Victims, where it planned to enhance the law enforcement in the fight against sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children according to the EU standards and best practise. The project purposes to further strengthen the institutional capacities in the area of prevention and fight against sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children, as well as in the area of police assistance to vulnerable crime victims, especially children and their families.

2012 - Center for Missing and Exploited Children (CNZD) began operating a hotline for reporting material online that depicts or encourages the sexual exploitation of children and currently is an is an active member of the INHOPE association of global hotlines. Since its launch, the CNZD hotline has received 287 reports and in 2014 received 84 reports. Croatian Safer Internet Center was established with the signing of a Strategic Partnership Agreement by the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Administration, the Croatian Academic and Research Network - CARNet, the Technical Polytechnic in Zagreb, the Croatian Personal Data Protection Agency, the Polyclinic for the Protection of Children of the City of Zagreb and the Partners in Learning Association. Center for Safer Internet consists of a helpline for counseling for children and parents, a hotline to receive information to the public relating to illegal content on the Internet that serves as a national platform for alert and available to all. Illegal content can also be reported on the Red Button website.

Along with 54 countries, Croatia has joined the Global Alliance against Child Sexual Abuse Online. The Alliance unites Ministers of the Interior and of Justice from each country to fight against Child Sexual Abuse Online, to rescue victims, to develop more effective prosecution, and to reduce the amount of child sexual abuse images available online.

2014 - Partners in Learning was appointed to implement ENABLE, an EU-funded two year project to combat bullying and contribute to the wellbeing of young people through their social and emotional development.

2015 - The Croatian Government has drafted a National Cyber Security Strategy and Action Plan that corresponds with the E-croatia 2020 strategy. For the education sector, the government plans to implement activities and measures to increase the safety, durability and reliability of cyberspace; strengthen awareness about the safety by the introducing the necessary educational elements within the regular school and other extracurricular programs; and encourage the development of harmonized educational programs in schools, institutions of higher education, through dedicated and specialized courses, linking academic, public and business sectors.