ICO ready to enforce the Children’s Code as it passes its 1st anniversary

The ICO says it is currently looking into how over 50 different online services are conforming with the Childrens’ Code, with four ongoing investigations. It has also audited nine organisations and is currently assessing the outcomes.

According to The Telegraph, two household names in social media and tech may face multi-million pound fines.

The Childrens’ Code has now been in force for one year. The ICO lists some of its achievements in this field:

  • Facebook and Instagram now have limited targeting to age, gender, and location for under-18s. Accounts for users under 13-years-of-age are deleted upon detection. Both Facebook and Instagram ask users to share their birthday with the platform if they haven’t shared it previously. Access is also restricted for people who repeatedly enter different birthdays and accounts are removed if they cannot prove they meet age requirements.
  • YouTube has turned off autoplay by default and turned on take a break and bedtime reminders by default for Google Accounts for under 18s.
  • Google has enabled anyone under 18 (or their parent/guardian) to request the removal of their images from Google image search results; location history cannot be enabled by Google accounts of under 18s; and they have expanded safeguards to prohibit age-sensitive ad categories from being shown to these users.
  • Nintendo only allows users above 16 years-of-age to create their own account and set their own preferences.

See: “Children are better protected online in 2022 than they were in 2021” - ICO marks anniversary of Children’s code

The September edition of PL&B UK Report will be published next week.