We’re proud to be part of the Children Online Protection Laboratory, working with the French Government and other stakeholders to improve online safety for children.
What is the Children Online Protection Laboratory?
In 2022, French President Emmanuel Macron launched the Children Online Protection Laboratory to improve the safety of minors online and shield them from harmful internet content.
The internet can be a great tool for children. They can learn, explore and socialise with friends. Unfortunately, research shows there is a lack of safeguards which means many children are stumbling across content and experiences which are inappropriate for their age.
The Laboratory aims to explore, promote, develop and evaluate solutions which can improve online safety, including age-appropriate content, privacy protection, parental support and digital literacy.
Who is involved in the Laboratory?
Current signatories include technology companies like Amazon, Dailymotion, Meta, Microsoft, Alphabet, Snap and TikTok, as well as organisations like WeProtect, Point de Contact, E-Enfance, and UNICEF. The governments of South Korea, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States have recently become supporters of the project.
We are delighted to be the first age assurance company to be invited to join this important initiative.
Creating age-appropriate experiences in France
We’re proud to help companies around the world to create safer, age-appropriate experiences online. We’re already working with many platforms in France to safeguard minors online, including:
- Instagram: If someone attempts to edit their date of birth on Instagram from under 18 to 18 or over, they are now required to prove their age using one of two options: upload their ID or use our facial age estimation. When presented with the two options, 81% chose facial age estimation. We’re incredibly proud that so many people enjoy the ease, speed, inclusivity and privacy of facial age estimation. This was initially launched in the US in June 2022 and has since expanded globally, including the UK, Europe, Mexico, Brazil, Canada, Japan, India and Australia.
- Yubo: Yubo is a social app for young people, used in more than 140 countries. One of their safety tools includes age-gating; they make sure users are of the required age to use Yubo and separate them into different communities based on age. This limits interaction between teens and adults – a unique feature among social media platforms today. Knowing that only users of the correct age are accessing the platform is therefore of the utmost importance. Using our facial age estimation, Yubo became the first major social media platform to check the age of every user.
- Wizz: Social media app Wizz is using our facial age estimation technology to help create a safe environment for all users, particularly teens. All users are required to use our technology when they create an account. This ensures that users are matched with individuals within their age range.
To date, we have completed more than 600 million age checks worldwide, and a wide variety of platforms in France use our technology. Thanks to this combination of French and international expertise, we will be able to contribute our knowledge and experience to the activities of the Laboratory over the next year.
We’re proud to be part of the Children Online Protection Laboratory, sharing knowledge, skills and expertise with the government and other stakeholders. We hope the Laboratory will continue to play a role as a catalyst for innovation and experimentation, and that future projects will further strengthen online safety for minors while respecting individual rights and privacy.
To find out more about our work in the Children Online Protection Laboratory, please get in touch.