Feeds

MPs call for crackdown on pre-paid credit cards

Child abusers getting away with it

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

The government has been urged by MPs to tighten controls on pre-paid credit cards, with claims they help child abusers avoid detection online.

Labour MP Geraint Davies said the cards were routinely used by paedophiles to hide their identities as he proposed a bill on Wednesday to force credit card companies to act.

He wants Visa and Mastercard to be liable when pre-paid card are used to access to abuse material, which would probably lead to their withdrawal or strict identity controls.

"Until 2002, users simply submitted their credit and debit card details online to download images of abuse from the web," Davies said.

"These days the new route for users is to hide their identity by using pre-paid credit cards to download images. These pre-paid cards are available to adults and children for £100 a time at service stations and high street retailers without the need to provide proof of identity."

Davies' private member's Bill - introduced under what is know as a Ten Minute Rule Motion - drew support across the Commons, with backing from Tories including Edward Leigh, the chairman of the Public Accounts Commitee.

Under current legislation, Davies said, no proof of identity is required to purchase a pre-paid card worth up to £100.

"That is why Parliament should back the provisions in my Bill to make credit and debit card companies liable for penalties when their cards are used to download images of abuse," he said.

Davies acknowledged that Visa and Mastercard had taken action following a police crackdown on online child pornography in 2002 to monitor and report illegal use of conventional credit cards, but said abusers have migrated to pre-paid.

"The credit card companies are not taking pre-emptive action," he charged.

"There is lots of money involved and no appetite for voluntary industry action."

"I hope that the Government will listen and adopt the provisions into mainstream legislation."

Ten Minute Rule Motions are typically used to draw government attention rather than in expectation of becoming law. ®

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

More from The Register

next story
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.