In order to force pornographic websites to adequately manage the age of visitors to their sites starting in September, France will unveil a digital-certification system this week, according to French Digital Minister Jean-Noel Barrot.
To verify that they are at least 18 years old, visitors to these websites must download and install a government-licensed digital certification app on their phones. Websites that do not comply run the danger of having their French publishing rights suspended.
“I intend to put an end to this scandal … In 2023, it is the end of access to pornography websites for our children,” Barrot said in an interview with French daily Le Parisien.
France will become the first country in the world to take such measures, according to Barrot.
Under current legislation in France and most European countries, users have to 18 to be able to access pornography. But there is no effective control mechanism and users can simply enter a fictional birth date on their screens.
A 2018 OpinionWay survey found that by the ages of 12 and 15, 62% of children have been exposed to pornography, according to the French government’s “I safeguard my child against pornography” website.