Digital Services Act: What it means & and how EU will regulate tech giants

In a significant move, the European Union(EU) finalised a new legislation named Digital Services Act (DSA) to regulate harmful content including hate speech, disinformation and child sexual abuse images.

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The regulation has been in the pipeline for the last two years. It is linked to Digital Markets Act (DMA) which involved anti-competitive practices.

What is Digital Services Act?

The new regulation bans targeted ads at children and other information related to religion, gender and race. It also prohibits websites from misleading users into giving personal information. 

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The websites would have to quickly remove harmful and illegal content and social networking sites would have to ban users who repeatedly publish illegal content. It requires platforms to be transparent and their algorithms and AI tools to be auditable by the European body.

How will e-commerce companies comply?

The legislation also targets companies like  Amazon to verify the identity of suppliers in a move to strike down counterfeit goods as e-commerce sites would have to “trace” traders. 

It proposes to allow “trusted flaggers” to help identify fake goods as sites work to get them quickly removed from the net.

Will there be a fine for will digital companies?

Global digital companies including Google, Facebook’s Meta and other tech giants could be fined 6 per cent of their global turnover if they violate the act and could be banned from operating in Europe if they repeatedly break the rules.

(With inputs from Agencies)

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