Internet Safety for your Children

5th February 2019

Parents have you bought a connected toy or device for your child?

The Data Protection Commissioner is continuing to highlight the dangers of buying internet connected devices for children.  Seeing that Santa may have brought some of these devices to the good boys and girls, it is a good idea for parents to look at some of the advice that the Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) has issued.

Some toys are highly interactive and can recognise words and respond accordingly.  They may also connect to apps on smartphones or tablets.  This connection through smart phones or other internet enabled devices “might allow for the collection and recording of ‘conversations’ between the doll and the child, or even act as a walkie-talkie.

The GDPR empowers parents/guardians to have more control of their children’s personal data processing.  The manufacturer of these toys may rely on consent to legally undertake the collection and processing of the child’s Personal data.  If the child is under 16, the Parents or Guardians consent is therefore needed.

So, these are key Take home points for parents/guardians should undertake:

  • Ensure that they are asked for authorisation
  • Understand who the data controller is, why the personal data is being collected and how it is secured.
  • Be able to exercise their right to withdraw their consent, to find out or access the personal data that is retained, and/or how to have it deleted.
  • To take extra care when selecting a toy that has a camera or voice-recording ability, connects to the internet, allows remote connection using a smartphone or tablet app, or has a location tracking facility.

If you would like any additional information or advice, contact our Data Protection team on 042 9743040