Age verification rule for adult websites

Pierre Vaugeois
Juillet 17, 2017

The government is poised to usher in mandatory porn checks this week, with reports it will require users to provide details from a credit card to prove they are over 18.

"We are taking the next step to put in place the legal requirement for websites with adult content to ensure it is safely behind an age-verification control".

The government is also expected to announce plans to appoint a regulator to police the sex websites, with the intention that all online porn sites have age verification controls by April 2018.

The ID checks are due to be part of the Digital Economy Act, which encompasses the introduction of age-verification rules for sites that provide porn "on a commercial basis" to United Kingdom viewers, as well as the introduction of a regulator to check sites are complying with the new rules.

"All this means that while we can enjoy the freedom of the web, the United Kingdom have the most robust internet child protection measures of any country in the world".

The minister of state for digital, Matt Hancock, began the official process on Monday by signed the commencement order for the Digital Economy Act.

A child's hands on the keys of a laptop keyboard
A child's hands on the keys of a laptop keyboard

Just under half of 11-to-16-year-olds and more than a quarter of 11-to-12-year-olds have viewed pornography online, according to an NSPCC report published last year.

The claim is that it is vital to protect children from exposure to adult content is incredibly important, so the British Board of Film Classification - which sets age limits on films - will have to look at each site.

"The NSPCC is calling for social networks to be required by law to give under-18s safe accounts with extra protections built in, so that children are kept as safe online as they are in the real world". "There is also nothing to ensure a free and fair market for age verification".

Will Gardner, the chief executive of internet safety charity Childnet, said that steps to restrict child access to adult content "are key".

The organization's study also deduced that about 28 percent of children have been noted to stumble upon pornography websites accidentally, while 19 percent searched for such sites intentionally.

The Open Rights Group, however, has warned about the privacy issues that could arise as a result. We are concerned that the porn company MindGeek will become the Facebook of age verification, dominating the United Kingdom market.

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