Pornographic Messages

Trade and Industry written question – answered on 4th February 2004.

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Photo of Patsy Calton Patsy Calton Shadow Minister (Health), Spokesperson On Older People

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment has been made of the use of telephone transferred charge calls to propogate unwanted pornographic messages; and if she will make a statement.

Photo of Gerry Sutcliffe Gerry Sutcliffe Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Trade and Industry) (Employment Relations and Consumer Affairs)

None. However the law relating to pornography applies online as it does offline. Unsolicited emails and reverse SMS messages advertising pornographic services are prohibited by the regulations implementing a recent EC Directive on Privacy and Electronic Communications, and which are enforced by the Information Commissioner's office. The mobile operators are drawing up a code of practice to cover new forms of content including pornography. Premium rate services continue to be regulated by the Independent Committee for the Supervision of Standards of Telephone Information Services (ICSTIS).

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