Every generation has to deal with a new issue that wasn’t around in their time. With a growing trend in digital children’s toys, social media and the Internet, a common challenge for families is how we control the way our children consume digital products.
Greater attention has been placed on this of late, especially with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that was recently introduced in May. This revised regulation (which replaces the UK Data Protection Act, 1988), has been introduced to offer greater protection to individuals’, particularly the way their data is gathered and stored.
12 key areas
And for the first time ever, this extends to protecting children, signalling that times have changed, and our need to stay up to date with latest advancements.
Official guidelines have suggested 12 key areas that business’ focus on right now, with ‘Children’ being one of them.
The guidelines suggest that companies must think about procedures in place to verify children’s ages and ensure they obtain parental/guardian consent if any personal data is required.
The guidelines recommend that if an organisation offers online services to children and requires their consent for information collection, they now may be required for a caregiver to provide such information first. The age defined as a child is for individuals aged 16 and younger, although this may reduce to 13 in the UK.
One of the other key areas of focus for these new regulations is ‘transparency’. It demands that businesses remove ambiguity where data is collected, ensuring that it’s very clear when data is being requested and that the individual is fully informed and consensual of the information they volunteer. Now this extends to children and their caregivers too.
These changes will be seen as a welcomed move by families across the country, who will benefit from the extra control and scrutiny imposed, in order to protect the most vulnerable in society. For more information on the GDPR and its guidelines, you can visit the official ICO website here.
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