Britain's 'porn ban' will come into force on July 15. After this date, all UK internet users will be required to confirm that they are 18 years of age or older to access adult entertainment sites.

Given that Pornhub alone has received 33.5 billion views in 2018, with the UK being the second largest user after the US, the upcoming age verification filter is expected to reach a sizeable number of people in the UK.

Although it is often called the "British porn lock", this name is not entirely accurate. The Age Verification Law is in fact part of Article 25 of the Digital Economy Law, which includes several articles on online legislation.

The process works as follows: As of July 15, 2019, adult websites will be required to display a welcome screen for UK users upon arrival on the site. This interstitial screen must not contain adult content and must inform visitors that they must prove that they are over 18 years of age in order to continue.

If a user can use an approved age verification system, they will enter this information, which will likely be a non-identifiable username and password. If they don't have these details, the site may explain how to get them, but you won't be able to access the site without providing them or is the idea.

All adult sites, hosted or based in the UK or not, will have to support it. Sites that don't support it can face a fine or be completely blocked in the UK (or both). Eventually, when the program runs for a few months, users will be able to report sites that don't meet the requirements.

The British Board of Film Classification was chosen to administer the system. Age verification will not be provided, but will approve providers that will. You will be responsible for sanctioning non-compliant sites, if necessary, request ISPs to block those who do not verify age correctly.

The stated aim of the British "porn blackout" is to protect children. The British government said that young people were too easy to watch hardcore adult videos and that it was necessary to protect them from accidentally tripping. You won't find many people who disagree with this sentiment.

However, the result will be that all consenting adults will have to work miracles to show that they are old enough to have access to the things to which they are legally entitled.

As in most cases, it is very likely that many people do not know how it will affect them. So expect to see confused and frustrated people roaming the streets on July 15.

The purpose of the UK's "Porn Block" is to protect children online

British porn blocking is designed to protect children online, but there are still many risks

When will the UK 'porn lock' come out and how will it work?

We know that as of July 15, anyone using a website that offers content that is inappropriate for minors in the UK will need to verify their age.

To do this, users over the age of 18 will be required to provide proof that they are old enough to access restricted sites. Verification can be done online or at a store where you can purchase a pass that confirms the holder is 18 years of age or older.

The burden of proof in a store may be a bit lighter than online. While you may be required to provide photo identification, such as a passport or driver's license, many merchants will simply apply the common sense rules they currently rely on. If someone is over the age of 18, they probably won't be challenged to produce an identity piece.

From this point of view, the focus on the store may seem more of a privacy issue. People looking for adult content can go to a store anywhere in the UK and buy their passes, which can get in the way of someone they know.

Online, the process can be said to be more anonymous, but you will have to prove your age by uploading an ID. AgeID, the leading provider of age verification for this new legislation, says that it will not retain any personal information, the site claims that it sends your data to a third party who then asks to verify your age and you will be able to choose your provider.

Once your username and password is provided, you will be free to login to any age-restricted site and personal information will never be exchanged. However, the question remains how safe it is to download an image of your passport or driver's license.

We can see different forms of age verification. A natural way to do this would be for mobile networks to assign credentials to users. These companies already know and have verified your age in many cases. Identification must therefore be simple.

How can someone check their age?

This is where things go in the shade. First of all, when this article was first published in May 2019, the BBFC did not list any approved age verification systems.

However, we know that there are different options that will likely be on the approved list, and that is where the problem begins to worry from a privacy perspective.

The main verification technology is called AgeID and is managed by a company called Mindgeek. Looking at the Mindgeek website, one might think that it is an Internet security company. This is not like that at all.

It is the umbrella brand behind some of the largest adult websites in the world. Mindgeek uses PornHub, RedTube and YouPorn. It also owns content creators and provides payment and monetization services to other erotic content producers.

AgeID will be an online system and visitors to adult websites will need to verify their age by uploading proof that they are old enough.

The alternative, the PortesCard, will be purchased in stores where the seller will confirm your age. The card contains a code valid for 24 hours after purchase. A companion mobile app will allow you to convert this code to an AgeID and log in.

There are two types of DoorsCards for sale, one for a single device and one for multiple devices. Of course, it is feared that children will share AgeID accounts, which means that if someone gets a PortesCard, it will give access to others. Some security measures will be put in place to prevent this, but it is unlikely to be fully effective.

The concerns and concerns of these two systems are just one of the reasons why we expect many people to turn to VPN services.

Can you use a VPN to get around porn blocking?

Yes, it is undeniable that search terms like “Best VPN for porn” will explode in the UK on the day the lockdown comes into effect. Being able to bypass geolocation restrictions, content blocks, and web filters with the help of a virtual private network (VPN) is one of the key uses of these services, while also ensuring privacy. in the web

Commercial VPN services allow users of almost any device to select the country in which they want to appear. This has generally been used by people to take advantage of the American Netflix library in the UK, for example.

UK law requiring age verification is set up when a user appears to be traveling from a UK IP address. If an adult site cannot determine this from the location data provided, it will allow users in the UK to view the same content that is accessed from outside the country's borders.

Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are powerless to prevent people from bypassing restrictions in this way because VPN traffic is encrypted, therefore, completely opaque to them. ISPs have no way of seeing what their VPN client clients are looking at when connected to one.

The government may be trying to impose the same age restrictions on virtual private network providers. To know that they must verify that customers are 18 years or older. But that would require the adoption of a separate law, almost certainly, it would be extremely unpopular. This seems unlikely, as terrorists and pedophiles are already using virtual private networks (VPNs), but without being attacked, porn blocking will be different.

The main reason for this blocking is to prevent underage children from accessing inappropriate content., but many fear that downloading their data to new services will be confidential or placed in some kind of porn surveillance database, that is: the confidentiality of a VPN may bring some comfort.

The downside for these users is that VPNs cost money (albeit a few dollars a month in most cases). and they represent more than the cost of a simple porn user pass from a registered provider. Some VPN services are free, including Hotspot Shield, which provides 500MB of data per day.

Other free VPN apps tend to offer reasonably low data rates or use your broadband connection to provide a reciprocal service to other users. This is undesirable for most people and can have privacy implications, so using a more reputable provider is essential. TechRadar has tested all the major VPN services and we think ExpressVPN is the best.

Mindgeek has the largest porn sites on the internet, including PornHub, RedTube, and YouPorn.

Mindgeek has the largest porn sites on the internet, including PornHub, RedTube, and YouPorn.

Will all adult sites fit the lockdown?

Sites offering adult content are highly unlikely to comply with the British porn block. There are many reasons for this. They range from too high a cost to confusion as to what is required. Note that most of the porn sites are not hosted in the UK and many of them are not based here from a business point of view.

Although the big companies know that the law is coming, small businesses may very well not have a clue or care enough about the UK. While the British government promises fines for companies that don't comply, it doesn't have much jurisdiction anywhere else in the world. Perhaps this could put pressure on EU companies, but the UK has decided to isolate itself from this source of support.

What if the sites do not comply?

Fines of up to €250,000 can be applied to any company that fails to comply with the new UK porn regulations. They can also be blocked by all UK based internet service providers if they refuse to implement the controls. These blocks are likely to be the same type as those used by the High Court to prevent people from accessing live football streaming services and torrents like The Pirate Bay.

ISPs do not have the option to implement these blocks and the public will almost certainly not be aware of the blacklisting of sites and services.. For many users, the websites they currently use will simply disappear and be replaced by an explanation provided by the user's Internet provider.

How long will it take to apply the lock?

A very large percentage of the internet is pornographic content. Some estimates suggest that 4% of the top 1.000.000 websites provide pornography. This represents approximately 42,000 separate websites that host adult content.

This will present a huge challenge for the BBFC, especially if these sites refuse to take action. Dealing with every non-compliant site would be a lengthy process and would require the regulator to be aware of those who fail to verify a user's age or who discover it on their own.

The costs and time it will take could be considerable and we won't know the challenges this creates until the law goes into effect and we can see the impact starting July 15.

The British porn block goes into effect on July 15.

(Image: © Shutterstock)

How will the UK porn ban help those under 18?

Although this is part of life, online pornography raises many legitimate concerns. Its failure to present a realistic view of sex, the treatment of women, and the increasingly extreme nature of video content is problematic.

Some studies have shown that pornography has a detrimental effect on some people's sex lives, and some reports claim that its use could lead to erectile dysfunction and brain changes.

Many videos seem to force women into sex for money or harassment, giving a distorted view of consent, although they are fictitious acts of fiction, they can give young people an inappropriate view of how whose sex should work in a normal relationship

Reducing the number of children seeing these distortions could be considered a very good thing. Although in order to buy this, you first have to agree that porn blocking will work, which is clearly not entirely true.

Will it help parents?

The legislation has some advantages that will help parents. Assuming this is a complete success and all porn service providers put a British gateway on their sites, younger children may find less adult content.

Actually, there is also a lot of porn on other services like Twitter, Reddit, and image sharing sites. Because these companies are not providers of pornography, they are also not required to create an age-based gateway for their content.

As always, it's best for parents to report and monitor their children's online habits. After all, viewing porn is just one of the many dangers of unlimited Internet access. Although an ambitious goal, Internet use among people under the age of 16 should be carefully managed by parents, but even the best of intentions cannot protect against resourceful and curious young minds.

Also, like it or not, many kids under the age of 18 already use VPNs and will continue to do so.

The Digital Economy Act of 2017 establishes the legislation for the British porn block

The Digital Economy Act 2017 sets out the legislation for blocking British porn

What does the British government say?

The government says that child safety online is a priority. Research conducted by the NSPCC suggests that 28% of 11-12 year olds have been exposed to pornographic content, rising to 65% among 15-16 year olds.

David Cameron started talking about pornography restrictions in 2013. Originally, these projects provided that Internet service providers offered age restrictions to customers who wanted them. Later, ISPs started applying content filters to new subscriptions, and customers had to unsubscribe. This varies from provider to provider, but Virgin Media has set the filter as the default filter in 2018. The EFF has a detailed list of key restrictions on ISP content. .

Mobile networks also offer content filtering that is enabled by default and can be disabled by calling your provider or using your online account settings to disable it.

In July 2016, Parliament read the Digital Economy Bill for the first time and included a section directly related to internet pornography. Composed of 17 articles, it covers all the legislation approved on April 27, 2017. Originally, it was to apply from April 2018, but was delayed until “Easter 2019”. It was then delayed again and must now be applied from July 15, 2019.

Outside of VPN services, how could people get around the block?

The British porn block is largely based on two things. First, a site must determine a user's location in order to serve an age-restricted landing page. And second, when a site is blocked for violating age restrictions, your ISP needs to know you're accessing it to prevent requests from being fulfilled.

As stated above, a VPN will prevent you from viewing UK porn blocking posts, because the traffic between you and the internet is generally encrypted. This also takes your ISP out of the equation: you use their bandwidth, but they can't see what you're actually seeing.

But if you fear that your children will see inappropriate content, know that there are other ways to avoid it too.

The TOR service uses a custom version of Firefox and routes traffic through the network using encryption in the same way as a VPN. All TOR users agree that other people on the network use a small part of your internet bandwidth, which means that you visit their websites in a way that makes it very difficult for them to understand where you are.

TOR is a completely free way to hide a little bit of who you are and you are also unlikely to fall under the feet of the British porn blockade.

There is also another technology strongly recommended by Google and Mozilla to secure the Web. It's called DNS over HTTPS (DoH) and it adds a significant layer of security to web traffic. In the same way that traffic between TechRadar and your browser is encrypted (look for the padlock in your address bar), the same can be done with the initial search for a domain name.

Typically, when you enter a website, your browser uses an unencrypted DNS server to convert LaComparacion.com into a usable, numeric IP address (185.113.25.56). Using DoH would prevent your ISP from knowing what site you are accessing and therefore any blocking just won't work.

DoH is currently a bit too complex to implement for most users. Your router needs assistance. We've tested tools to encrypt DNS traffic, but we still have Virgin Media's warning page for The Pirate Bay (a convenient test site because it's blocked by the same system as non-compliant porn sites).

The British porn block arrives on July 15.

(Image: © Shutterstock)

What about other ways to share adult content?

This is perhaps the area in which the government has demonstrated its utter ignorance of the Internet.

Blocking adult entertainment sites can prevent someone from typing "porn" into Google and easily accessing streaming videos. The least we can do is the myriad of other ways to share sex videos.

From top to bottom, British people send each other pornography, whether professional or domestic, via WhatsApp. If kids have access to a smartphone, they likely have WhatsApp, Snapchat, Signal, or Telegram. All allow the circulation of practically any type of video that you like. And these videos are not subject to the strict rules imposed by the hosts of porn on their videos.

There is a good chance that children are exposed to much more disturbing videos through WhatsApp than on PornHub. So-called revenge porn, where someone's intimate moments are shared without their permission, could spread much further. It's a very disturbing situation and forcing sexuality underground is never a good idea.

Then comes the big problem of BitTorrent and newsgroups. These services are commonly used to stream almost all types of videos from all types of porn sites. Kids who want to find porn will be able to do so easily, and nothing protects kids from accidentally downloading a video thinking it's one thing, and getting porn by mistake.

The government has long tried to put an end to torrents and other illegal video sharing methods, and so far it has been unsuccessful.

What are the harmful consequences of the blockade?

Viciously, some claim that blocking British porn will inadvertently make children less safe. One reason is that people are much more likely to use a VPN, which then opens up different parts of the internet that, for good reason, can be blocked.

Pornographic content, for example, is not illegal, but abusive images are, like terrorism. Using a VPN can therefore allow young people to come across this type of content.. The government's main argument in this regard is certainly to protect children from the possibility of accidentally seeing things that could harm them.

So what happens when you ask a school to search for "beheading videos" without any restrictions on online access to terrorist material?

This may seem like a step forward, but VPNs and RPTs can allow children to access the elements of the Internet that we really want to avoid. TOR, for all its legal uses, also makes it easy to access dark websites where you can buy drugs or worse. Encouraging vulnerable youth to use these technologies is a risk.

It is also feared that this prevents young people from accessing vital information about their own sexuality that could cause problems for them. This could have a profound impact on young people who grow up in families where they do not feel able to ask adults about their feelings and want to turn to the web for understanding.

There is also the very real problem that the government has control over the public Internet. Nation states acting as arbiters of what people can watch without special permission is a disturbing trend that we have seen in other parts of the world and would probably rather not see in the UK.

1556814850 218 UK Porn Block Everything you need to know

Is this a disaster for privacy in the making?

Of course, there is great potential for this lockdown to come back en masse. One of the biggest problems is that Mindgeek offers a large proportion of adult content online. He is also heavily involved in AgeID and, by extension, PortesCard.

Although the company says it doesn't retain the information used in the age verification process, we don't know what the potential is for combining the two.

If records of the actual name used are kept in the age verification system, they will possibly be associated with someone's browsing history on PornHub. It doesn't take a spectacular stretch of the imagination to see people excluded because of their perfectly legal sexual preferences.

The consequences of disclosure of such information by hackers or leaks due to incompetence could range from simple intimidation to people losing their jobs. The last consequence is that it could cost lives if it pushed people to commit suicide.

Providers of age verification systems, of course, they will have to comply with the GDPR rules, but mistakes do happen and no ticket can prevent an accident or poor safety from becoming a problem.

What are the compliance costs for adult sites?

Blocking pornography will have financial implications for everyone, in some cases these costs will be considerable. At the most basic level, it will cost taxpayers money because the government will spend time and money monitoring it. There will also be legal challenges to defend, especially if the BBFC asks internet service providers to block websites challenging this decision in court.

The costs of implementing age verification will also have to be borne by someone. Porn sites will need to add functionality to their sites. For large companies like Mindgeek it will be commonplace, for small vendors it might be too difficult to bear. For those who don't want to comply, blocking UK traffic is the easiest way to avoid high costs.

To verify age, porn companies will have to choose one or more of the BBFC-approved access providers. These companies obviously must fund these identity checks in two ways.

Mindgeek, which manages AgeID, will not directly charge consumers for age verification. Instead, it will charge porn companies for each client to verify. Again, this is great for large sites, even if it's a source of money they'd probably rather not spend. But small, custom providers will have a harder time finding that money; it may cost them less to completely block UK customers.

The other option is to bear the cost of running the service directly to clients. It will be possible to switch to your local news agent and buy a Gates card which will cost you €4.99 for one device or €8.99 for multiple phones, tablets or computers. You'll be able to buy one of these cards from all PayPoint retailers and most people live within a mile.

Paywall-protected sites may be able to use a customer's credit card to verify that they are over 18 years old. However, the BBFC may not consider this protection appropriate, as minors may "borrow" credit cards to: avoid blocking.

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