An anonymous reader shares a report: The UK’s Online Safety Bill, a wide-ranging piece of legislation that aims to make the country “the safest place in the world to be online” received royal assent today and became law. The bill has been years in the making and attempts to introduce new obligations for how tech firms should design, operate, and moderate their platforms. Specific harms the bill aims to address include underage access to online pornography, “anonymous trolls,” scam ads, the nonconsensual sharing of intimate deepfakes, and the spread of child sexual abuse material and terrorism-related content.
Although it’s now law, online platforms will not need to immediately comply with all of their duties under the bill, which is now known as the Online Safety Act. UK telecoms regulator Ofcom, which is in charge of enforcing the rules, plans to publish its codes of practice in three phases. The first covers how platforms will have to respond to illegal content like terrorism and child sexual abuse material, and a consultation with proposals on how to handle these duties is due to be published on November 9th.