The Children’s Code

The Children’s Code (or Age Appropriate Design Code to give its formal title) is a data protection code of practice for online services, this code applies to “information society services likely to be accessed by children” in the UK.

This includes many apps, programs, connected toys and devices, search engines, social media platforms, streaming services, online games, news or educational websites and websites offering other goods or services to users over the internet. It is not restricted to services specifically directed at children.

The code aims to ensure that children have a baseline of protection automatically by design and default, so that they are protected within the digital world rather than being protected from it.

Businesses and organisations should consider if the content of their site would interest a child. If you are an online fashion retailer, for example, do you sell clothes that may appeal to teenagers? Have you done any research to confirm who your customers are?

It came into force on 2 September 2020 and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has advice, information and resources to help organisations achieve compliance by 2 September 2021.

For further information please visit the Children's Code hub on the ICO website.

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