January 25, 2016
Following pressure from the Children’s Charities’ Coalition for Internet Safety (CHIS), Ofcom is to review a voluntary code of practice for mobile content, and will publish a report on its finding in the summer.
CHIS is concerned that there is inadequate control of mobile internet safety, leaving young people inadequately protected from gambling, pornography and other inappropriate content.
The current, voluntary code of practice was established in 2004 by mobile phone networks including Orange, O2 and Vodafone.
The code aims to protect children who use 3G phones, which provide access the internet, video cameras and full-colour screens.
Under the code, phone companies agreed to provide a filter to block unsuitable content, on phones used by children. A classification system for content was introduced and phone companies agreed to work with law enforcement agencies on the reporting of potentially illegal material.
CHIS is concerned that some mobile operators have failed to adhere to the code.
Ofcom’s inquiry could lead the voluntary code being replaced with strict, new rules.