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Porn Websites To Be Required To Verify User Ages Under New Safety Law

Jesse Williams

By Jesse Williams

Jesse Williams

8 Feb 2022


Pornography websites will be legally required to verify the age of their users under new online safety rules, the Government has announced.

“Robust checks” will be deemed necessary to make sure they are only being viewed by people of age.

Sites may use credit card checks, or use a third-party service to confirm ages against Government data.

Notably the new legislation will now cover all commercial pornography sites, extending the scope beyond YouTube-style platforms that allow unverified users to upload content.

It also closes “OnlyFans loophole” where the site could legitimately argue that it should not be covered by the law because children did not constitute a significant portion of its user base.

Non compliant websites will feel the wrath of watchdog Ofcom, who will be able to fine them up to 10% of their global turnover or block the site from being accessible in the UK.

Other proposals under the newest iteration of the Online Safety Bill will see a crackdown on scams and fraud paired with more prison sentences for serious internet offences.

Digital minister Chris Philp said: “It is too easy for children to access pornography online. Parents deserve peace of mind that their children are protected online from seeing things no child should see,”

“We are now strengthening the Online Safety Bill so it applies to all porn sites to ensure we achieve our aim of making the internet a safer place for children.”

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