Children access porn using mobile phones

By Derek Sooman on February 2, 2006, 5:02 PM
Itís a parentís nightmare that their children use their Internet connection to look at porn. What with there being some right sick crap out there (just do a search in Google for something even fairly tame and see what you get back) itís not surprising that parents elect to supervise childrenís internet access as often as possible. But what about when access canít be supervised?

UK consumer magazine Which said kids are able to access pornographic web sites by using mobile phones and that's because there's a loophole in phone safeguards.
It is claimed that it is possible for children to get codes for adult websites, making payment using premium rate text messages. Tests carried out by Which were able to confirm that researchers could obtain codes for eight pornographic sites, by using an O2 phone registered to a 15 year old girl.

Although O2 made it clear that they were checking to see if they could introduce additional safeguards, Blue Coat Systems claimed the phone firms are being wrongly targeted Ė that it is in fact the websites that need to get their act together.

Nigel Hawthorn, VP of the security company said: "This is akin to holding the British mail responsible if my child puts five pounds in an envelope and sends it off to an adult website."




User Comments: 12

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vigilante said:
And just where do little "children" find such techniques to begin with? That doesn't sound like something they just stumble on.It's a shame, what can you do?
Vaulden said:
In my eyes it is not an issue with O2 or other such companies. I can see them adding extra features the parents can subscribe to/add on, but it should not be up to them to police children. The websites should go through steps to verify the recipient is of age, but even then there is only so much we should expect. It's up to the parents to... well parent. Know what your kids are doing; know what they have access to. If you are willing to give your kids more technology than they need, teach them well and be willing to deal with any consequences that come from it.
MonkeyMan said:
Wow, this is very very serious. This loophole has to be censored, or edited in a way that access cannot be easily obtained. As mobile phones become more and more technologically advanced, and more user friendly, it will make more things easily accessible to children. I only hope for our youth's sake, that they find some way to modify this loophole, because this could easily become one of the most heated debates ever, and could possibly bring politics into the mix, and we all know, that is always a bad thing.
otmakus said:
[b]Originally posted by vigilante:[/b][quote]And just where do little "children" find such techniques to begin with? That doesn't sound like something they just stumble on.It's a shame, what can you do?[/quote]I believe most of those little "children" are more sophisticated with electronic gadgets, cellphone included, than their parents. Giving a high tech cellphone to a child is the same as giving a gun to a child. He/she will eventually abuse it, out of curiosity.
gamingmage said:
Wow again with the mobile phones. I think that it is the website's faults because the phone producers have the idea of using the phone for talking and texting not these kinds of things. How are they going to censor it? I mean sure they can produce new phones with a better safeguard, but what about the phones that are already out there. If they really wanted to fix this problem they could have a recall of all the phones with the problem and replace them with the newer ones with tightened sercurity. This is definitely a problem that needs fixing.
recongunny said:
1. Other than trying to keep up with his/her peers, why is it imperative for a teen or preteen to have a cell phone with internet capability.2. Since minors cannot enter into a contract, obviously the parents are paying the bills.3. If there is parental concern what their children may be or are being exposed to, how about (a) downgrading the children to (God forbid) a low tech phone that does nothing but two-way voice transmissions; (b) reduce the options available on the cell phone the child is carrying; or (c) pay the penalty and just cancel the contract. Granted that most teens nowadays probably figure I and my generation were grilling dinosaur steaks for our evening meal, I didn't need a cell phone to talk to my best friend down the block, nor did my kids. I certainly think todays' teens can do without cell phones and suffer no permanent mental, physical or emotional damage. On the other hand, observing the detrimental effect of conversing on cell phones while operating motor vehicles by supposedly experienced drivers, I can't help but think providing such distractions to neophyte drivers only endangers not only their well being but the well being of others on the streets. Parents, don't blame the providers; accept and exercise responsibility.
djleyo said:
thats the bad side of tech advances cell phones right now are verry advanced they can do almost everything but wait im sure security software companies are going to develop tools to block such uses for cell phones i olso think parents shoul take responsabilities why would a 9 year old need a razor phone come on get them a simple phone they relly dont need all of the features new cell phone provide
Cy6erpuke said:
This is not new. What does it matter where out kids get their porn. Parents should wake up and smell the coffee. The days of buying your kid the best cellphone, Computer with internet and then not keeping an eye is over. Sure nanny-type software would probably come in later of mobile, but what untill then? Parents, do your jobs!
Race said:
[quote]Said Hawthorn: "Most mobile phone companies are now blocking the downloading of adult content on the phone and therefore the only way the child can access this information is via their PC." He said PCs should use internet filtering software.[/quote]Does this news come as any sort of surprise to anyone?I would think not.At least the cell phone companies appear to be doing what they can.With today's technologies, kids are going to get access to anything, if they really want to, despite filters, and despite parents.
sngx1275 said:
I agree with recongunny, this is nobody's fault here aside from the parents. Don't punish the content provider for having the porn, don't punish the phone makers or the phone company for allowing this to happen, they aren't the parents here. Another thing its akin to is blaming Dell for allowing their product to display porn.Just don't give the kids a damn cell phone, every kid before about '95 got by without one. Also you aren't going to keep your little boy sheltered from porn until he's 18 or 21 anyway. They are going to get it somewhere, whether it be from their dad's closet or found along side a road. The first time I saw 'hardcore' porn was when I was a little kid doing a roadside cleanup as community service as a Cub Scout.
nathanskywalker said:
Like was mentioned, nothing new, this is very bad(duh), but why is it worse for childeren than adults? Should anyone look this stuff up? The girl mentioned was 15 right? If that is the case, then, also as was pointed out, she could be affected by her peers, and some of them could be eighten and older. Kids can surprise at what they know, and what they can do, or figure out. I've taught my brother a few things and latter regretted it when i found myself locked of the computer(minor incoveinece). But really, if you want this kind of thing to stop, or at least be lessend, secure identification of some kind should be required.
Need_a_Dell said:
I'm not sure if this is as bad as it sounds. You all may think I'm a little weird, but when I was around 10, it was a pretty big thrill to hunt around with my buddy and find my dad's stash of mags. These acts of looking at "phorno" doesn't seem to be all that different. This is just a way of rebelling against today's modern society using the equipment that they've been given. There is alos a concern about mobile video players and the fact that kids can take them onto the playground and show their buddies some boobies. I think every male in the world found great joy in seeing their first pair of breasts, and this isn't really any different. Give the kids a break, sure, give them a talking to, but don't be too hard. It's just a child's natural curiosity of human sexuality, nothing more.
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