At the request of the chairman of the Chamber of Representatives’ Committee for Economy, Consumer protection and Digital Agenda, the BIPT issued an opinion on a draft resolution regarding the protection of young children against inappropriate online content that was submitted to the Chamber.

In its opinion

  • the BIPT supports the aim to protect young children against inappropriate online content;
  • the BIPT asked to first examine the adopted and ongoing European initiatives regarding the protection of minors against inappropriate online content before implementing a protection at the terminal equipment level (obligations for the manufacturers) and at the level of the Internet access service (obligation for the Internet providers (ISPs));
  • the BIPT recommends examining whether the implementation of legislation in France (which constituted a major source of inspiration for the draft resolution) is successful, before launching (national) initiatives imposing obligations to other players involved in the provision of online content than provided for in the adopted or ongoing European initiatives.

As regards the additional (national) demands that would be imposed for terminal equipment the BIPT rather prefers a harmonisation at European level, as this is not exclusively a Belgian matter.

If a protection system were to be introduced at ISP level as well, the BIPT believes an accurate system of parental advisory should be developed which integrates the protection of data and individual privacy and safety. The standardisation of such a system, especially the part related to adequate online age verification, is still under development. 

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