For a long time the issue of protection of children online has been a point of discussion. It is argued that websites must ensure that children are protected from information that might not be appropriate for them. This is an emotive topic that requires to be handled with a lot of soberness in mind. It is worth noting that there are content provided on different websites that might harm children in one way or the other. Age verification involves protection of children who are underage from content that might not be appropriate depending on their specific age.
The site owners or those who are promoting certain products or services must make a determination whether there are benefits they get by providing age restricted services or products online. In case a provider operates at a global level, it means that the issue of verification is a multifaceted issue that also under other local regulatory considerations. This is an issue that highlights a big gap in the shared understanding among content providers and merchants. There is a need to determine the controls that will prevent the risk of prosecution if an under aged person access age limited goods or services.
Effective methods of age verification
In its simple form, age verification answers one important question. The question is if the person has attained the right age to access the online service. Therefore, this is an issue of eligibility and not identity. Identity assurance on the other hand asks the question if the person is who they claim or say they are.
It might be correct to make an assumption that a medium trust identity assurance process would offer the attributes for verification of age. In truth this is not a viable or proportionate to make use of such a comprehensive process for most of the goods or services that are age restricted.
Age verification is an issue regarding date of birth or age check to make determination of service eligibility. The problem arises when giving an assurance of the date of birth. The evidence showing the date of birth such passport must be validated by the issuance authority. As owners of data look for ways to monetize their properties, more date sets must be made available for attribute checking. These require just a yes or no response instead of sharing data.
Another good approach for verification of age is trust. For instance, in case the subject can take a credit card as a hood evidence of age, then the assumption is that they are over eighteen. However, it is good to note that this assertion does not in any way bind the owner of the card to the subject who is carrying out the transaction.
One important thing for those who want to offer inline access to goods or services that have age restriction is to comply with the regulations set. Legislation rarely stipulates the way compliance needs to be attained. In real sense low trust, low impact assurance processes might help in achievement of the desired results.
Internet business must put into consideration the eligibility to buy as well as the ability to make payment.