May 2016

The Society’s committees have been working on a number of Scottish Parliament and UK Parliament Bills and consultations including the Investigatory Powers Bill, Child Safety Online and the criminal offence of domestic abuse.

Key areas are highlighted below. For more information see the law reform section of the website:

Child Safety Online

The Criminal and Privacy Law Committees have responded to a consultation paper by the UK Government on age verification for pornographic websites.

The ‘Child Safety Online: Age Verification for Pornography’ consultation identifies the problem of a large number of young people across the UK being able to access adult websites on their computers – up to 20% of those under 18 and 13% of those aged six to 14 -  and the damaging effect this can have. The UK Government is consulting on proposals which would require age verification for accessing pornographic websites

We have warned that the proposals for age verification could be counterproductive and potentially drive those producing online pornographic content further afield to websites hosted in countries that would not cooperate and result in even less protection for children.

The Society’s full consultation response can also be found on our website