CARE: Christian Action, Research and Education

For what you believe
Open menu Close menu

'Ofcom too slow to act on OnlyFans safeguarding fears'

Online Safety
1 May 2024
Camera johannes blenke Lrldq Ct KI2 M unsplash

Ofcom has been too slow to act on safeguarding concerns relating to adult platform OnlyFans, CARE has said.

Reacting to news of a formal investigation into OnlyFans, Tim Cairns, Senior Policy Officer at CARE, noted that is has taken four years for OnlyFans' compliance with age verification rules to be acted on.

Mr Cairns also questioned whether Ofcom has the will to enforce the Online Safety Act - which requires a wide range of sites to implement age checks and stop children accessing porn.

CARE spearheaded calls for age checks on sites that host pornographic content and worked with MPs to see this change realised. Recent polling for CARE found public support for tougher action.

Mr Cairns said:

“The Online Safety Act has been heralded as step forward in protecting children from porn. Whilst it is significant, it is not the first piece of legislation passed by Parliament that requires online porn to be subject to age verification. Since 2020, video service providers such as OnlyFans have been required to implement age verification to prevent underage access. It is disappointing that Ofcom has taken 4 years to take action against OnlyFans.

"Video service providers and other on demand services subject to the 2020 rules number in the hundreds. By contrast, millions of websites that host pornographic content fall within the scope of Online Safety Act. If Ofcom has been slow to bring enforcement action against a small number of obvious platforms, how can the public be confident that it will enforce the law against the millions of porn sites accessed in the UK?

“Ofcom needs to restore confidence by taking swift action against all video services that continue to flout the law and make a commitment to the public that it will enforce the Online Safety Act rigorously. Parliament has tasked the regulator with ensuring kids cannot access harmful sexual content and that is what the British public expect. Ofcom must show concerned parents and others that it is capable of delivering.”


Savanta polling of more than 2,000 adults for CARE found that:

> 7 in 10 people support the appointment of a Pornography Commission to ensure that illegal or violent porn is removed from websites and social media.

> 8 in 10 people think directors of companies that own porn sites should be held responsible for illegal material on their platforms and face fines or jail.

> 3 in 4 people think directors of social media sites should be held responsible for illegal material on their platforms and face fines or jail.

> 6 in 10 people agree laws on porn should be the same for content viewed offline (such as DVDs) and content viewed online (such as major porn sites).

Notes for Editors:

Christian Action Research and Education (CARE) is a social policy charity, bringing Christian insight to the policies and laws that affect our lives.

Contact us:

Receive news from CARE each week

By signing up stay in touch you agree to receive emails from CARE. You can change your mailing preferences at any time either by getting in touch with CARE, or through the links on any of our emails.

Recent news in Online Safety


Online Safety

For children and young people, access to harmful online content is only a click away. CARE is working towards a society where they are as well-protected online as they are offline.

Find out more about the cause