What is the Age Appropriate Design Code of Practice?

By David Hendry

The Age Appropriate Design Code of Practice (AADCOP) is an extension of the Data Protection Act 2018 that affects providers of information society services (services delivered at a distance over the internet) that are likely to be used by children.

The AADCOP consists of 15 principles that must be adhered to by those required to comply with it.

The standards are not intended as technical standards, but as a set of technology-neutral design principles and practical privacy features. The focus of the code is to set a benchmark for the appropriate protection of children’s personal data. Different services will require different technical solutions.

If you provide any kind of information society service that is accessible to people under the age of 18 You must build the 15 principles set out in this code into your design processes from the start, as well as building them into subsequent upgrade and service development processes and into some of your data governance processes.

The code was approved by parliament in September 2020, organisations affected by the AADCOP must be able to demonstrate that they comply with it by 21/09/2021.

Failure to comply carries the same penalty as non-compliance with the GDPR, including fines of up to £17.5 million or 4% of prior year global annual turnover.

We are keen to determine the extent to which organisations are aware of and preparing for the AADCOP and have prepared a short survey to inform articles we are writing about this.  Please click on this link to take part.:


Further information about the AADCOP is available on the website of the Information Commissioner:https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/news-and-events/age-appropriate-design-code-blog/

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