Internet: Bullying

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 1st June 2022.

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Photo of Jim Shannon Jim Shannon Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Human Rights), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps the Government is taking to address allegations of cyber bullying in the UK.

Photo of Chris Philp Chris Philp The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

The Government is committed to addressing cyberbullying and online abuse in the UK and the Online Safety Bill will deliver strong protections for UK users online. This Bill was introduced to Parliament on 17 March 2022, and has now passed second reading.

The Bill will require all companies in scope to tackle illegal abuse on their services, by making sure it is taken down quickly and by using tools to minimise the risk of similar material appearing. Services which are likely to be accessed by children will also need to protect them from legal but harmful content and activity, such as cyberbullying. Companies will have to ensure that reporting mechanisms are easily accessible, and parents and children should expect to see platforms responding quickly and effectively to reports of cyberbullying. The Bill will also require the largest and highest risk services to set out in terms and conditions their approach to addressing harmful content for adults, such as online abuse which does not meet a criminal threshold. Ofcom will be able to take enforcement action, including large fines, against companies that fail to comply.

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