Refuge responds to Ofcom call for tech companies to do more to protect women online


Responding to the Ofcom call for tech companies to do more to protect women online, Refuge CEO Ruth Davison said:

‘This is an important announcement from Ofcom which mirrors what Refuge has long been saying – that big tech companies need to do much more to protect women and girls from online harms and abuse.

Right now, the Online Safety Bill is making its way through the parliamentary process. This Bill has the ability to make positive strides forward in addressing online Violence Against Women and Girls, but it is currently falling short.

Refuge is disappointed that the Bill currently does not explicitly commit to offering specific protections for women and girls and along with our sector partners, has offered the government a ‘ready to go’ code of practice which it could simply insert into the Bill to help ensure social media companies address online Violence Against Women and Girls.  This is a modest yet incredibly meaningful change the government could make, and we hope they will hear our calls and most swiftly to adopt the code as an integral part of this important and much needed Bill’


Notes to editors:

Interviews available on request, please contact the Refuge press team on 0207 395 7731 or email

About Refuge:

Refuge supports thousands of women and children on any given day, and runs the National Domestic Abuse Helplin.e, which is the gateway to accessing specialist support across the country. More than one in four women in England and Wales experiences domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime, and two women a week are killed by a current or former partner.

Please signpost to Refuge’s National Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247, available 24 hours a day 7 days a week for free, confidential specialist support. Or visit to fill in a webform and request a safe time to be contacted or to access live chat (live chat available 3pm-10pm, Monday to Friday). For real time automated guidance on how to secure your personal devices Refuge also has a Tech Safety Tool.

Visit Refuge’s Tech Safety Website at for information on tech abuse and to find guidance on how to secure your personal and home devices. For real time automated support Refuge also has a Tech Safety Tool.