Posted on November 22, 2019 by staff

ICO submits ‘Kids Code’ guidance to government


The Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham has submitted her final version of the ‘Age Appropriate Design Code of Practice’ to the Secretary of State.

The code, dubbed the ‘Kids Code’ is designed to provide guidance for providers of apps, programs, websites, games, connected toys and even devices without a screen which process personal data and are likely to be accessed by children in the UK.

The ICO, the UK’s independent regulator for data protection and information rights law, said that under current restrictions in the pre-election period the code could not be published until a new government is formed.

In August, Denham outlined her vision for the code on the ICO website.

“We do not want to see an age-gated internet, where visiting any digital service requires people to prove how old they are,” she wrote.

“Online services play an ever-growing part in our children’s lives, but the internet was not designed for children. Our code aims not to protect children from the digital world, but instead protect them within it.”

The Government included provisions in the Data Protection Act 2018 to create standards that provide proper safeguards for children when they are online.

As part of that, the ICO was required to produce a statutory age appropriate design code of practice which has been dubbed the Kids Code.

The code is rooted in existing data protection laws (the General Data Protection Regulation and Data Protection Act 2018), that are regulated and enforced by the ICO.

The ICO said the final version of the code reflects a detailed consultation carried out by the ICO, which received around 450 responses to the draft code sent out for consultation in April 2019.

It has since conducted meetings with trade bodies, industry representatives, campaigners and individual organisations.