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Pornography Prevention: Australian firms given six months to develop code to prevent children from seeing porn

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NEW DELHI: Australia is giving the internet industry six months to develop an enforceable code to prevent children from accessing pornography and other inappropriate materials online, or the government will intervene and implement mandatory regulations, a regulator announced on Tuesday.
The eSafety commissioner said that it reached out to members of the online industry demanding a plan by October 3 explaining how they plan to protect minors from seeing the stimulating high-impact material before they are ready, also including themes of suicide and eating disorders.
The code should be standardized for how app stores, websites including pornography and dating websites, search engines, social media platforms, chat services, and even multi-player gaming platforms verify that the content is suitable for the users, the commissioner said.
The demand starts a second phase of industry codes overseen by the regulator, which has previously approved codes, looking at how internet companies stop the spread of terrorism or child sexual exploitation content.
The code for protecting children from pornography should have certain measures including, age verification, default parental controls, and software that blurs or filters unwanted sexual content, the regulator said.
“Kids’ exposure to violent and extreme pornography is a major concern for many parents and carers, and they have a key role to play,” said Commissioner Julie Inman Grant in a statement.
“But it can’t all be on them. We also need industry to play their part by putting in some effective barriers,” she added.
A spokesperson for Google, a unit of Alphabet, said the company would collaborate with the industry on the new code and a spokesperson for Facebook and Instagram owner Meta said the company continued to engage constructively with the eSafety commissioner.
Representatives of X, formerly Twitter, and app store provider Apple were not immediately available for comment.





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