Playboy will have to cough up £100,000 after Ofcom ruled that two of its websites are in breach of protective guidelines. Both Playboy TV and Demand Adult were found not to have adequate checks in place to ensure users were over the age of 18, therefore failing to protect children from accessing potentially harmful pornographic material.
Hardcore videos and images were on show without suitable controls, said Ofcom. The homepage of Demand Adult simply asked for one-click age verification to enter, which anybody could do, and allowed debit card sign up for paid content. Only credit cards are restricted to over 18s.
While Playboy TV didn't have hardcore imagery on its homepage, it too required only a debit card sign-up to access stronger porn.
Unlike regular pornographic websites, Ofcom and its concurrent regulator the Authority for Video on Demand (ATVOD) has authority over the Playboy sites because they "provide access to videos in a similar way to adult services broadcast on television and fall within UK jurisdiction".
Demand Adult was fined a total of £65,000 and Playboy TV £35,000.
"Ofcom concluded that Playboy’s failure to protect children from potentially accessing these sites was serious, repeated and reckless," the UK regulator said in a statement.