Children In The UK May Not Be Able To Like Social Media Posts, Companies Not Able To Nudge Them, As Per New Regulation

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The United Kingdom’s privacy regulator wants to stop kids from being able to “like” posts on Facebook and other social media sites as part of tough new rules it’s proposing to protect children’s online privacy

Written By Tech Desk | Mumbai | Updated On:

Would this potential new move to the internet becoming a safer platform, especially for children? This is because the United Kingdom’s privacy regulator wants to stop kids from being able to like posts on Facebook and other social media sites as part of tough new rules it’s proposing to protect children’s online privacy.
 

Under new draft rules, which were released for consultation on Monday, tech companies would not be allowed to use “nudge techniques” that encourage children to keep using a site.
 

The Information Commissioner’s Office said examples of “reward loops” that keep people using a site so that more of their personal data can be harvested include “likes” on Facebook and Instagram or “streaks” on Snapchat. A Snapchat streak involves two friends sending each other direct “snaps” on consecutive days.
 

The code of practice includes 16 standards that must be met by apps, connected toys, social media sites, search engines, news or educational websites and streaming or other online services. It applies to companies that offer services in the U.K., even if they are based outside the country.

The code also calls for “high privacy” settings to be on by default and “robust age-verification mechanisms.” Only the minimum amount of data should be collected and location
tracking should be disabled by default.

Violators face punishment including, in serious cases, fines worth 4 percent of a company’s global revenue, which for the Silicon Valley tech giants would equal billions of dollars.

“This is the connected generation. The internet and all its wonders are hardwired into their everyday lives,” Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said in a statement. “We shouldn’t have to prevent our children from being able to use it, but we must demand that they are protected when they do. This code does that.”
 

Regulators worldwide are stepping up oversight of internet companies amid growing concern about privacy breaches and other online harm. The European Union introduced sweeping new privacy rules last year while in the U.S, momentum is building for national privacy law.


At this juncture, it is also worth noting that social media companies have already taken the initiative as far as checking the spread of fake news within their platforms is concerned. This is relevant concerning the fact that elections in the world’s largest democracy - India are around the corner.

(With Inputs from Associated Press).

Also Read: Hackers Reportedly Compromised Certain Microsoft Outlook Email Accounts Over A Long Period Of Time, Be Vigilant At Least Now

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