A new law that forces social media companies to take ‘all reasonable steps’ to verify a user’s age and ensure a child’s parent has given permission in addition to the use of artificial intelligence to estimate their age of users is unveiled.
Failure to comply with the new laws, social media platform would face increased fines of up to $10million, up from the current maximum of $2million.
The changes are outlined in an exposure draft of new legislation released on Monday by Attorney-General Michaelia Cash.
The new law will also aim to stop children’s information being shared without consent.
Communications Minster Paul Fletcher told Parliament on that the online privacy code will ‘strengthen protections for children and other groups of vulnerable users’.
‘We are being very clear in our requirements on the social media platforms under the code, they will be required to take all reasonable steps to verify the age of users to take more reasonable steps to verify parental or guardian consent for children under the age of 16 years,’ he said.
As well as social media services, the code will install new rules for data brokers and other large online operators with more than 2.5million Australian users such as Amazon, Google and Apple.
The codewill allow users to demand their personal information be kept from any third parties.
‘An individual may choose to use this when, for example, they do not want an organisation to disclose their personal information for the purposes of direct marketing,’ the draft legislation says.
However, the law would not give users the right to demand their data be erased.