IIC & COVID 19 Read More

NEWS

UK Abandons Plans for Online Porn Age Verification

21.10.2019
Share this

Plans to introduce a nationwide age verification system for online pornography have been abandoned by the UK government after years of technical troubles and concerns from privacy campaigners, reports the Guardian. “The climbdown follows countless difficulties with implementing the policy, which would have required all pornography websites to ensure users were over 18. Methods would have included checking credit cards or allowing people to buy a ‘porn pass’ age verification document from a newsagent. Websites that refused to comply with the policy – one of the first of its kind in the world – faced being blocked by internet service providers or having their access to payment services restricted.” The culture secretary, Nicky Morgan, told parliament the policy would be abandoned.

Instead, the government would instead focus on measures to protect children in a much broader online harms white paper. This is expected to introduce a new internet regulator, which will impose a duty of care on all websites and social media outlets – not just pornography sites. She said: “This course of action will give the regulator discretion on the most effective means for companies to meet their duty of care.” Despite abandoning the proposals, Morgan said the government remained open to using age verification tools in future, saying: “The government’s commitment to protecting children online is unwavering. Adult content is too easily accessed online and more needs to be done to protect children from harm.”

Despite repeated reassurances from pornography websites and age verification sites that personal details would be kept separate from information about what users had watched, privacy campaigners continued to raise concerns about data security. In addition, earlier this year the Guardian showed how one age verification system could be sidestepped in minutes. See Guardian item and Online harms white paper.

Plans to introduce a nationwide age verification system for online pornography have been abandoned by the UK government after years of technical troubles and concerns from privacy campaigners, reports the Guardian.

Theme:
Governance, Privacy, Safety, Security
Region:
Europe
Series:
Regulatory Watch
You may also like... News
5G auctions delayed in Europe 02.04.2020
News
FCC grants temporary spectrum access 01.04.2020
News
Portugal suspends 5G spectrum auction 26.03.2020

Latest

News
5G auctions delayed in Europe 02.04.2020
News
FCC grants temporary spectrum access 01.04.2020
News
Portugal suspends 5G spectrum auction 26.03.2020
News
M-Pesa moves to reduce cash usage 26.03.2020
View All
Back to the top

The IIC is the world's only policy debating platform for the converged communications industry

We give innovators and regulators a forum in which to explore, debate and agree the best policies and regulatory frameworks for widest societal benefit.

Insight: Exchange: Influence

We give members a voice through conferences, symposiums and private meetings, as well as broad exposure of their differing viewpoints through articles, reports and interviews.

The new website will make it easier for you to gather fresh insights, exchange views with others and have a voice in the debate

Take a look Learn more about our updates
Please upgrade your browser

You are seeing this because you are using a browser that is not supported. The International Institute of Communications website is built using modern technology and standards. We recommend upgrading your browser with one of the following to properly view our website:

Windows Mac

Please note that this is not an exhaustive list of browsers. We also do not intend to recommend a particular manufacturer's browser over another's; only to suggest upgrading to a browser version that is compliant with current standards to give you the best and most secure browsing experience.