Porn rule change pushed back to summer - here's what you need to know

Pornography providers will be required by law to carry out age-verification checks
Pornography providers will be required by law to carry out age-verification checks

Online pornography providers will be required by law to carry out age-verification checks on users, to ensure that they are 18 or over.

The new law, which is the first of its kind, was originally planned to come into force on April 1.

Websites that fail to implement the new rules - which will come into force on July 15 - face having payment services withdrawn.

READ MORE: Plans for 13 new homes to the rear of Mansfield’s Berry Hill Hall
The government says that a large amount of pornography is available online with little or no protections to ensure that those accessing it are old enough to do so, which is changing the way young people understand healthy relationships, sex and consent.

READ MORE: Last minute change of plans for Shirebrook gymnastics club venue
These checks will be rigorous - users will be able to verify their age with credit cards or passports, or buy a card over the counter in a shop where the verification is face to face.

Margot James, Minister for Digital said: "“Adult content is currently far too easy for children to access online. The introduction of mandatory age-verification is a world-first, and we’ve taken the time to balance privacy concerns with the need to protect children from inappropriate content.

"We want the UK to be the safest place in the world to be online, and these new laws will help us achieve this.”

The government confirmed that the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), which classifies movies in the UK, will be the age verification regulator.

READ MORE: Southwell Workhouse opens doors for a new season - and big changes have been made
David Austin, BBFC's chief executive said: "The introduction of age-verification to restrict access to commercial pornographic websites to adults is a groundbreaking child protection measure. Age-verification will help prevent children from accessing pornographic content online and means the UK is leading the way in internet safety.

"On entry into force, consumers will be able to identify that an age-verification provider has met rigorous security and data checks if they carry the BBFC's new green 'AV' symbol."

Carolyn Bunting, chief executive of online safety group Internet Matters, welcomed the introduction of the new rules.

"We are delighted to see the government tackling the issue of online pornography - as children seeing content they're not emotionally ready for can be very damaging, especially if they don’t speak out about it." She said.

READ MORE: Police hit out at 'act of stupidity' by youths in Southwell
"While our research shows that parents overwhelmingly support age-verification and are confident it will make a difference, we must recognise that digital solutions aren't the only answer and parents can't become complacent about their child's digital world.

"There is no substitute to having regular and honest conversations with your child about what they're getting up to online, establishing an open dialogue about their digital life from a young age."