UK government to work with advertising companies to create new laws to tackle online abuse

UK government to create new laws to tackle online abuse

UK government will join forces with charities, industries and public to create new laws to strengthen the internet safety in the country.

The new laws will aim to tackle a range of both legal and illegal harms, from cyberbullying to online child sexual exploitation.

The government will also work with regulators, platforms and advertising companies to oversee advertising of tradition media and prevent companies from targeting unsuitable advertisements at children both offline and online.

In addition, DCMS will host a series of roundtables and conduct research on a social media.

Department of culture, media and sports and Home Office will further collaborate on a White Paper with other government departments, to be published later this year.

The move comes after government's recent Internet Safety Strategy green paper which highlighted that six in 10 people had witnessed inappropriate content online while four in 10 people said they had experienced online abuse. Also, four in 10 people said that the concerns they put to social media companies were not taken seriously.

Matt Hancock, department of culture, media and sports, secretary of state UK said: “Digital technology is overwhelmingly a force for good across the world and we must always champion innovation and change for the better. At the same time I have been clear that we have to address the Wild West elements of the Internet through legislation, in a way that supports innovation. We strongly support technology companies to start up and grow, and we want to work with them to keep our citizens safe.

“People increasingly live their lives through online platforms so it’s more important than ever that people are safe and parents can have confidence they can keep their children from harm. The measures we’re taking forward today will help make sure children are protected online and balance the need for safety with the great freedoms the internet brings just as we have to strike this balance offline.”

Home secretary Sajid Javid said: “Criminals are using the internet to further their exploitation and abuse of children, while terrorists are abusing these platforms to recruit people and incite atrocities. We need to protect our communities from these heinous crimes and vile propaganda and that is why this Government has been taking the lead on this issue.

“But more needs to be done and this is why we will continue to work with the companies and the public to do everything we can to stop the misuse of these platforms. Only by working together can we defeat those who seek to do us harm.”

UK government is also poised to launch a ‘rapid response’ unit to combat fake news.

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