It will be either KES 300, 000 or a jail term of six months or both for parents and telco operators who go against new regulations in The Child Online Protection and Safety Guidelines. The guidelines demand that telcos, Internet service providers, and app developers verify the age of their users. This is a move to regulate the registration of children using SIM cards/smartphones.
Parents To Register Children Using SIM Cards or Face Fine
In recent years, the internet has become so accessible, and gadgets are increasingly affordable. Minors have been able to register SIM cards under their parent’s credentials, giving them unlimited web access. It is a good move for access to academic resources since digital learning has rampantly been adopted. However, the cons that come with that have raised serious concerns.
Vices such as pornography, risks of cyberbullying, and identity theft are dangerous territories for minors. Through the new measure, people may be asked to prove their age via a third-party service. This would aid in preventing children from viewing explicit materials.
“Mobile service providers in the development of age-verification mechanism ensure that All SIM cards that are to be used by children/minors shall be registered,” Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) regulations. “Mobile phone subscribers are informed of the need to appropriately register their SIM cards and declare the intended subscribers of the SIM cards.”
Vendors selling smartphones and tablets will also be required to take on additional responsibility in the race to control children’s access to harmful content. Their manuals will have to contain instructions on how to use inbuilt apps like parental control to influence the content minors access via smartphones.
Parents can view the supervised users’ browsing history, block specific sites, and approve access requests.