Tech platforms could be forced to hand over the personal data of children who have died due to online harm to telecommunications regulator Ofcom.
The measure was added as an amendment to the Online Safety Bill, which has been making its way through Parliament since it was introduced back in March 2022.
The amendment has been backed by a group of parents who have experienced the death of a child linked to social media abuse.
Bereaved Families for Online Safety was founded in part by the parents of Molly Russell, whose social media-linked death in 2017 became a major symbol in the campaign against online harm.
The goal of the amendment is to allow deeper investigations into the deaths of children by allowing coroners to claim personal data.
“This is an important day for bereaved families affected by online harms,” said Beeban Kidron, a peer and founder of the child online safety charity 5rights.
“The government has promised to provide a humane route for bereaved parents and for coroners to access critical information at a tragic time.”
Lady Kidron added: “We must create an online world that is safe for children, where tragedies like the ones of the families with us today are not commonplace. Our shared goal must deliver safety by design and default and build the digital world that children deserve.”
The Online Safety Bill remains a controversial topic among tech firms, many of which have expressed concern over specific sections within it.
Messaging apps, including WhatsApp and Signal, have called for end-to-end encryption to be protected from the bill to ensure user safety and privacy.
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