Protecting the virtual child: the law and children's consent to sharing personal data

The purpose of this report is to indicate current legal thinking on children's ability to give informed consent to information sharing.

An executive summary and recommendations is followed by an introduction and notes on the background, development of the law, the significance of the Gillick case, the question of whether a 12-year-old can consent to having their sensitive data shared, the elements of competence, whether parents need to be involved, if practitioners need specific training and whether local authorities offer it, the information a child needs if consent is to be "informed" and whether local authorities give practitioners information/training in data protection and information security, ending with a conclusion and recommendations.

A second section describes, compares and analyses the law in other European countries.

Terri Dowty
Douwe Korff
Action on Rights for Children