UK calls on social media firms to better protect children

April 22, 2018

Britain's health secretary says the government will introduce new laws targeting online social media companies if they don't do more to protect children.

In a strongly-worded letter to Facebook, Google, Snapchat, Twitter and others, Jeremy Hunt said their failure to prevent using and exposing children to its "harmful emotional side effects" was "unacceptable and irresponsible."

Hunt said Sunday he was particularly concerned about the lack of age verification measures, with thousands breaching minimum user age rules.

He gave the companies a week to set out steps they are taking to cut underage use, prevent cyberbullying, and promote limited screen time.

Hunt last year attacked Facebook for releasing a version aimed at children, telling the company to "stay away from my kids."

Explore further: What your kids want to tell you about social media

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