Digital industry held to account for kids’ safety online
The Albanese Government has backed the latest round of reporting notices issued by the eSafety Commissioner, calling on digital platforms to demonstrate how they are keeping children safe online.
The Commissioner has issued legal notices to Google (including YouTube), Twitter, TikTok, Twitch and Discord, to determine how each provider is complying with the Government’s Basic Online Safety Expectations in relation to child sexual exploitation and abuse.
Providers will now have 35 days to respond to questions in the notice, or face hefty fines of up to $687,500 for every day that they fail to comply.
The Commissioner has also posed questions in relation to efforts to combat sexual extortion, resources being dedicated to safety efforts, and algorithmic recommendation systems.
The Expectations are a key part of the Online Safety Act 2021, and underpin efforts by eSafety, supported by the Albanese Government, to improve transparency and accountability within the digital industry.
The notices require the companies to explain what they are doing to meet the Expectations, as set out in the Act and the supporting legislative instrument.
For more information about the Basic Online Safety Expectations, visit https://www.esafety.gov.au/
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Communications, the Hon Michelle Rowland MP:
“Today’s children and young people are digital natives, and it is crucial they feel and are safe online.
“The Albanese Government expects industry to make every effort to combat serious, criminal acts online, including child sexual exploitation and abuse.
“Notices issued by the eSafety Commissioner will ensure all Australians know what the platforms they use every day are doing to keep users safe, and which platforms must do better.
“I urge all five providers to comply with these notices from the eSafety Commissioner to reassure the community they are playing their part to keep children and young people safe online, or face serious consequences.”