France to require parental consent for minors to use TikTok

TikTok must implement a tool in France for parents of children under 15 to give their consent for the use of the application (Reuters) (DADO RUVIC /)

The National Assembly French voted this Thursday to require social networks such as TikTok either Snapchat that verify the consent of the parents for the registration of minors under 15 years of age. The bill, presented by the head of the deputies of horizons (liberal), Laurent Marcangeli, was approved almost unanimously (82 votes in favor and 2 against) at first reading. Now it must be examined by the Senate.

marcangeli defended the “essential safeguards” that must be set before “the growing precocity of digital puberty and the power of the tools available to our young people”.

In your opinion, “we need to protect our youth from the risks of pornography, cyberbullying, unattainable beauty standards, and addictive ways of getting attention”.

The “digital age” of 15 years to which the text refers is not new: it was introduced in France in 2018 in application of European legislation, which left the possibility of setting it between 13 and 16 years.

But this threshold refers more broadly to the age below which parental consent is required for the processing of personal data of a minor. not really applied and it has not had any impact in terms of children’s access to social networks.

To remedy this, the text voted on Thursday intends to introduce the obligation that social networks “implement a technical solution to verify the age of end users and the consent of the holders of parental authority” for children under 15 years of age, which must be certified by the authorities.

Penalty fee

Companies that do not comply with the future law would expose themselves to a fine of up to 1% of the company’s worldwide turnover.

The text, which was debated in a day reserved for the group horizons (ally of the ruling party), also gives parents the possibility of requesting the suspension of the account of a minor under 15 years of age.

An amendment also added a restriction by providing that parents could not give their consent for children under 13 years of age.

It is about all of us – parents, companies, young people – assuming our responsibility” in the face of the increase in digital practices of minors, argued Laurent Marcangeli.

In social networks, the first registration occurs “on average around eight and a half years, and more than half of children aged 10 to 14 are present”, according to data from the National Commission of Informatics and Liberties (CNIL), cited by the deputies.

The French government is also planning to test an age verification solution in March to block minors from accessing pornographic sites.

original note of R.F.I..