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Data protection safeguards for children (‘digital age of consent’) consultation now open




Submissions are now being accepted in relation to the statutory age of consent threshold (“age of digital consent”) to be applied in Ireland in the case of information society services offered directly to children, as required by General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The GDPR provides that in relation to the offer of information society services (goods and services that are offered online, including social media), a person who is at least 16 years old can provide consent to the processing of their personal data. Where the child is younger than 16 years, there must be parental consent for the processing to be lawful.

However the GDPR goes on to say that a member state may provide by law for a lower age for the purposes of information society services provided that such lower age is not below 13 years.

The purpose of the consultation is to seek the views of interested parties on the statutory age of digital consent to be applied in Ireland.

Submissions will be considered by the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality when formulating proposals for Government on the digital consent threshold to be incorporated into forthcoming data protection legislation.

The closing date for receipt of submissions is Friday, 2 December. Submissions may be sent by e-mail to or by post to the Department of Justice and Equality.

Please click here for further details.

See the following link for the consultation paper: Consultation paper Data protection safeguards for children (‘digital age of consent’)

It will be interesting to see how this derogation works across all member states. If member states decide on different statutory ages of consent, this could put vendors in the situation where they have to deal with varied ages of consent for the same product or service depending on where the consumer is based.