UK Age Verification Controls for Adult Content from April 2018

Britain’s Digital Economy Act 2017 has become law. It came to replace a law that had been in place since 2010. The Act represents some new measures, and one of them has to do with protecting children from online adult content by requiring age verification for access to all adult content sites and applications. The Act also aims to make the UK “the most digital nation in the world.”

This means the UK government will restrict access to adult content through age verifications, and age verification controls will be in place by April 2018. Under the new legislation, owners and administrators of pornographic websites will be forced to check their users’ age and then allow them to access adult entertainment content. If the user isn’t 18 years of age or older, he/she won’t be allowed to view adult content.

Currently, many adult content websites are developed with check boxes that require users to tell the website they’re 18 or older. The problem is that users can simply acknowledge they’re 18 or older. Currently, there is no method to keep underage users under control or don’t allow them to view the content without parental control software. Due to the government’s new plans, users will have to provide credit card information to validate their age. In case a website doesn’t comply with the Digital Economy Act, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will have the right to filter it so no one can access it.

With this in mind, it’s critical for merchants running an adult content website to turn to a reliable payment processor like eMerchantBroker. EMB is voted the #1 high risk processor in the US and has an A+ rating with the BBB. eMerchantBroker provides exceptional merchant account services, including a secure and low-cost adult merchant account. EMB is rated A by Card Payment Options and is named one of Inc. 500’s Fastest Growing Companies 2016.

Many think that the issue is being used to get people used to the idea of stricter internet legislation. All this involves the risk of identity theft since users will be required to enter their credit card data.

It’s important to note that governments have always had a problem defining exactly what is meant by the term “pornography.” Many argue that parents and legal guardians must be responsible for preventing access to adult content, and not the government.

According to Jim Killock, the executive director of the Open Rights Group, because of age verification, porn companies could start building databases of the U.K.’s porn habits, which could result in Ashley Madison-style hacks.

Matt Hancock, minister of state for digital and culture in Britain’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport, says the Digital Economy Act is aimed at building a strong, safe and connected economy.