Age verification technology is very important for commercial websites dealing with adult content. It allows the adult industry to protect children as well as comply with the law. In this article, we will take a look at how it works, the laws that require it and the Online Safety Bill.

What is Age Verification?

Age verification in the adult industry is exactly what it sounds like. It ensures that customers confirm their age before they get access to the service. For a long time, this dealt with age-gating. Age-gating is based on the honour system, which requires the potential customer to either input their date of birth or simply check a box saying they are over 18 years of age. However, new online safety rules dictate that this is no longer enough. As minors aren’t always honest, age-gating still allows them easy access to the content. Because of this, age verification has to be much more sophisticated. Commercial pornography sites and others in the adult industry must implement stricter rules for how they perform this process. 

However, this poses another problem. Users visiting adult websites seldom wish to disclose their personal information. So how can commercial pornography websites combine age verification solutions with privacy? Let’s take a look.  

How Does Age Verification Work?

There are a few age verification methods currently on the market that can be separated into two main factions. 

Includes PII (Personally Identifiable Information) 

These methods include confirmation via ID documents or credit cards. Some deal with personal information like ID documents or credit cards, which allows the service to confirm a client’s age via their provided information. However, this brings some concerns from potential customers. As many clients of adult entertainment websites would prefer not to submit their documents. According to the Age Verification Providers Association, though, secure age verification technology is out there. 

Does not Include PII 

The other type of age verification, which Ondato provides, is AI-powered. Our system automatically discerns a person’s age from a live photo or video feed and places the user in an age group with 95% accuracy. That way, a majority of customers can get through without needing to provide personal documents, and they are only a factor if there are any doubts. Services can also decide whether or not they store data after it is used. 

What are the Laws Regarding Age Verification?

In recent years, the laws surrounding adult entertainment and age verification have become more strict. In 2017, The UK, with the Digital Economy Act, became the first country to pass a legal mandate for age verification systems. Additionally, in 2021, the Online Safety Bill was drafted and deals with protecting everyone, especially minors, on the internet. It confirmed a new legal duty requiring commercial providers of pornography and the sites that allow user-generated pornographic content to have strict age checks in place to ensure their users are 18 years old or over. This is not limited to commercial porn sites and includes any websites that allow adult content, including social media sites.

At the same time, the United States has started taking a closer look at age verification requirements as well. Recently, Louisiana passed a law requiring stricter age verification before a person can access online pornography. The law requires businesses to verify users’ ages via a “commercially reasonable method” and calls out government ID verification and database verification as potential solutions.

How can Ondato’s Age Verification Technology Help 

With our age verification system, you can get accurate estimates of a client’s age in just a few seconds and request identity documents only in cases when you’re in doubt. You can also use it as supplementary material to check your document validity. Our solutions can be effectively implemented in a wide variety of businesses required to verify age before providing a service, which includes sites dealing in adult content.

Our age verification is performed in 5 easy steps:

  1. Liveness check 
  2. Photos with various filters are generated to check for spoofing attempts
  3. A 3D biometrical map is created of the customer’s face
  4. The spatial coordinates from the map are compared
  5. The user’s face is assigned to one of the age groups

We also offer additional benefits. You can choose whether additional age verification steps are performed by your team or ours, our integration is fast and easy, and all major browsers and devices are supported. 

Last thoughts

Overall, age verification is an essential onboarding step for any adult entertainment service that wants to protect children. It’s also important to note that in order to protect young people, verification should be performed on creators as well. Companies should know exactly where any content is coming from. With Ondato, this can be made easy and leaving this work to a third-party service ensures that our focus is on the law and your clients while you focus on what matters most to your business. 

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