Insights Ofcom publishes Statement on international cooperation to protect children online together with its partners in a new International Working Group on Age Verification


Ofcom says that over recent months it has been working alongside its colleagues in Belgium, Cyprus, France and Germany to form the Working Group. Specifically, Ofcom has been working with the Autorité de Régulation de la Communication Audiovisuelle et Numérique (Arcom), the Conseil Superieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA), the Cyprus Radiotelevision Authority (CRTA) and Direktorenkonferenz der Landesmedienanstalten (DLM) to protect children online.

The aim of the Working Group is to make sure video-sharing platforms (VSPs) under their respective jurisdictions have in place robust access controls to protect children from accessing harmful video content on their services. Ofcom’s Statement enshrines this shared commitment and sets out the priorities for international collaboration.

Ofcom says that proactive international collaboration among regulators is critical to protect children and to make sure regulatory regimes are effective given the global nature of online safety challenges. For Ofcom, driving forward the implementation of robust age assurance to protect children from the most harmful online content is one of its strategic priorities for year two of regulating VSPs. The International Working Group is one of the tools it will use to realise this priority.

Ofcom’s international and VSP teams have worked closely together to represent Ofcom in the Working Group to learn from others, while also sharing insights from its research and day-to-day work assessing the proportionality and efficacy of age verification techniques. For example, Ofcom has shared its research on adult users’ attitudes to age verification on adult sites and the joint research with the Information Commissioner’s Office, on families’ attitudes towards age assurance. To read Ofcom’s Statement in full, click here.