Protecting the Young: Lawmakers Push for Age Verification on Social Media Platforms to Ensure Online Safety
Utah recently made headlines as it became the first state in the United States to pass two new laws aimed at regulating social media use by teenagers. The laws, which are set to take effect in March next year, impose strict rules on how social media companies handle accounts of teenagers, including provisions for parental consent, in-app parental controls, and curfew features. However, the most controversial aspect of the law is the requirement for age verification of users, particularly the youngest ones.
Under the new rules, companies such as Snap, Meta (formerly Facebook), and TikTok will no longer be able to simply allow teens to enter their own birthdate at sign-up. Instead, they will need to go through a different process, such as providing a copy of an identification document, to verify their age before they can access their accounts. This age verification requirement has sparked a heated debate among lawmakers, experts, and social media companies themselves.