ICO strategy on the Children’s code

The ICO has released a statement in relation to its strategy on the Children’s code. The statement looks at what has been achieved since the code came into force and at plans for the future.

The ICO states that the Children’s code explains how organisations can make sure that their digital services safeguard children’s personal information, enabling them to develop services and products in compliance with UK data protection law.

The ICO cited the following successes in the period since the code has been in force:

  • Facebook and Instagram have limited the information which they use in targeted advertising for under-eighteens, introduced measures to help to ensure under-thirteens do not use the service and introduced mechanisms to help individuals manage their time on the platforms
  • YouTube has turned off auto play by default and turned on “take a break” and “bedtime” reminders by default for account holders under eighteen
  • Google has enabled under-eighteens or their parents/guardians to ask to remove their images from Google image search results

Going forward the ICO’s focus will be on driving social media and video sharing platforms to make further progress in relation to:

  • Default privacy and geolocation settings
  • profiling children for targeted advertisements
  • using children’s information in recommender systems (which use AI/machine learning/big data to suggest what users might be interested in)
  • using information of children under thirteen years old

The ICO’s statement can be found here.

If you would like assistance in navigating the rules and guidance relating to processing children’s data, please get in touch here


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