Sep 15, 2021 08:00 UTC
Sep 15, 2021 at 08:00 UTC
UK children’s digital protection code becomes law
The UK children’s digital protection code went into effect after its one-year transition period expired. The Age Appropriate Design Code (“the Children’s code”) restricts and monitors online services that are provided to children through apps, games, websites, and other digital service platforms.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), which protects and advances the rights of children under the age of 18, established the Children’s code to regulate governments and private entities that process UK children’s personal data.
The code includes four principles that play an important role in balancing the rights and safety of children:
First, the best interests assessment urges children’s digital service providers to “actively take into account the child’s best interests as a primary consideration” when influencing children in the digital environment.
Second, the non-discrimination right holds that “all children’s rights should be ensured without discrimination of any kind.”
Third, the right to life and development affirms that children should have the opportunity “to develop in an optimal way: physically, mentally, spiritually, morally, and socially.”
Lastly, children’s right to be heard states that children should express their views, participate in some decision-making processes, and “exert influence over such decisions in accordance with their age and maturity.”
Executive Director of Regulatory Futures and Innovation at the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), notes that large social media platforms such as Facebook and TikTok have already updated their child privacy and safety measures.