As I am sure you are becoming very aware, from May 2018 we will become subject to the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), which will significantly affect the way that schools address data protection. However, it also has implications that will affect young people and the way that they may be able to approach the use of social media. In an interesting blog article, Sonia Livingstone, Professor of Social Psychology looks at the potential impacts.
In this blog, she highlights the impact that Article 8 of the 2016 may have by requiring verified parental consent for under 16s (or 13s, if member states so determine) to use ‘information society services’. It goes on to discuss whether this should be reduced to 13, where it is currently in line with Articles 13 and 17 of the UNCRC that highlights that children have the right to communicate online. Currently this is unclear and as stated in the draft guidance on consent released by the ICO;
“In short, if you offer these types of services directly to children (other than preventive or counselling services) and you want to rely on consent rather than another lawful basis for your processing, you must get parental consent for children under 16 – although the UK may choose to lower this, to a minimum age of 13.” So watch this space for updates on this!
This requirement also provides challenges for schools that are using or looking to use web based tools such as Google Apps, which require schools to get consent as highlighted in their own terms and conditions for use. To meet the requirements of the GDPR, schools that use these type of services need to start thinking about how they will get this in the future.
To read more on this issue, follow this link.