Digital Economy Act
The Digital Economy Act and Age Verification
The Digital Economy Act (DEA) passed into law in the UK in 2017. The act makes it illegal for vendors to allow young people under 18 to access digital pornographic material. This is in response to social concerns about the ease of access for young people to indecent imagery and videos. In a survey carried out in 2017 by the NSPCC it was found that 48% of children asked, between 11-16, had accessed online pornography.
Penalties for Non-Compliance With the DEA
Owners failing to operate age verification software on adult sites may be subject to a fine of up to £250,000 or 5% of their turnover. The regulator will have the power to order ISPs to block non-compliant sites, and request payment processors to stop processing payments. They will also be able to request that social media accounts are removed.
How Will Age Verification Work?
The simplest way for website owners to achieve compliance will be to select an age checking software provider and install the software for everyone accessing their site from the UK. Visitors only have to go through verification once: when a visitor attempts to access an adult site for the first time are likely to be greeted with an popup that prompts them to provide age verification. Once they are verified, an age verified account will be set up for them so they can access age-restricted sites by simply using a username and password.
AgeChecked for Website Verification
AgeChecked software can be simply installed either through code-based access (API), or by using plugins. We offer easy access for most CMS and eCommerce platforms, including WooCommerce, OpenCart, WordPress and Shopify. Once installed checks will be carried out directly, on your site. The process is streamlined and simple for visitors, ensuring that you’re fully compliant with the DEA.
An iFrame will explain to visitors why the age checking is necessary. The methods of verification offered include a driving licence, passport or credit card, for example. Once AgeChecked has completed background checks, the website owner is given the results of the check. Our goal is to help online vendors achieve compliance with the DEA, without delaying access, or inconveniencing their visitors.