The Importance of Age Verification
- Tech

The Importance of Age Verification

Humans, regardless of age, have their lives changed upside down, ever since the adoption of digital practices. Nevertheless, this change post the digital world has its pros and cons. Hardly there’s a society without the influence of digitality, irrespective of some developed or a third world country. Children and the youth today are more friends with the digital world or the Internet, to be precise than any other.

Nearly 71 percent of the people, when being on the Internet globally, are youth and children, as estimated. The age group 15 to 24 is believing to be the most active and connecting age group on the Internet. Also, out of every three global internet users, there’s always an underage user.  Consequently, the digitality not only has become a part of the children’s lives but has influenced their lives and ways of living to a great extent.

There is no denial in the positive aspects of the Internet. The Internet has to provide children with opportunities that were not possible prior. The Internet helps children in self-learning, self-development, and being entertaining as well. However, unfortunately, the possibility of children being vulnerable to the dark side of the Internet cannot be ignored. They can be exposed to the dark side of the Internet; they should not be to any time being on the Internet.

With all being said, an age verification service implemented on a large scale is needed in the contemporary world. Age Verification solutions verify the age of the users on the Internet, thereby helping the minors not fall victim to online dangers.

Child data protection without the Age Verification:

The data of the children have also been stolen on the Internet. In 2017 alone, the data of over one million children was stolen online. The data theft resulted in a loss of some 2.6 billion dollars, with the families paying more than 540 million dollars from their own pockets. (SOURCE: JAVELINESTRATEGY.COM)

The financial losses from data theft are one thing. But the risk which comes with it is scary. It is frightening that the data of children may be available or transferred to the dark web. That for what purposes data is made available on the dark web. This reason alone inevitably calls a robust regulatory framework; for digital security in general and data protection in specific.

Had there been some age verification service, it would have hindered the children’s access in the first place; subsequently, there would have never been child data theft.  

Why does the COVID-19 make Age Verification weigh even more?

With the outbreak of COVID-19, the world has become digital like never before. People have been using the Internet for every other thing. Meanwhile, for fraudsters, this is a blessing, disguising as a pandemic. Those with the wicked intentions for children have been active on the Internet too. 

Age verification solutions hinder the access of the children to the tempting websites. Therefore, making them stop being victims of data theft or any other wicking activity, which targeted children. That is how the age verification solution helps in making online security robust and keeping the data protected and away from the online thefts.

Age verification means:

Performing Age verification online requires age verification cards. Age verification card would usually authenticate the legal age of the user for allowing access to certain websites on the web and is a part of age verification online.

It usually includes: 

  • Government-issued identity cards
  • Credit/Debit card
  • Driving license
  • Passport

We have also learned so far how age verification solutions secure the security of our children while they are on the web. We, therefore, have compiled a list of means for performing age verification online:

Age Verification utilizing Credit Cards and Debit Cards:

This method involves the user inputting the card details. This would help in finding out the age of the users. 

However, the biggest drawback of this method is that a minor may input the details of a card held by some adult. That said, an age-verification combine with facial identification will be without any shortcomings. 

Age Verification utilizing Government-issued cards

This involves performing age verification online using some government-issued card. The government-issued cards are national identity cards, passports, driving licenses, etc. 

Thanks to the OCR (Optical Character Recognition), age verification is more robust than it has ever been. An OCR technology, after the user has uploaded the required document, would extract the data fields necessary for authenticating user age. 

This method triumphs in verifying the real ages of online users.

Age Verification by means Semantic Analysis:

Many websites, since they often have adult content, would perform semantic analysis on the data performed or provided by the visiting user. Semantic analysis refers to identifying specific patterns in which people belonging to certain age groups would use. Many of the companies on the web perform parsing on the user-inputted data, typically inputted and used by under-age users.

Age Verification using the Biometric Authentication:

While discussing age verification utilizing credit and debit cards, it was observing how the under-age person could exploit the method to his favor. It is learning and thus mentioning how using face verification can save the day for verifying the age.

It works by authenticating the image from the user-uploaded document. It cross-checks the image with the facial biometrics of the user in real-time. If the picture and the face matches, access would be granted, otherwise not. 

This double layer of authenticity, indeed makes this mean of verification, arguably, the best for performing age verification online.

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