RealVNC accounts now require age confirmation

By Lucy Hattersley. Posted

In compliance with GDPR, all RealVNC remote access software accounts now require age confirmation in order to ensure data privacy for minors.

People creating a new RealVNC account are asked to confirm that they are over 16 years old. If they are under 16 years old, a parent or legal guardian will be required to create the account using their own registration information.

An alert posted by RealVNC alerted readers to the new changes.

VNC Connect, provided by RealVNC, is included as a stock part of Raspbian - the official desktop for the Raspberry Pi. The software enables users to connect to a Raspberry Pi remotely, from another computer (or a smartphone or tablet). Users can even connect to a Raspberry Pi over the internet and control a Raspberry Pi board from anywhere in the world.

See: How to use VNC on a Raspberry Pi

RealVNC is set to deactivate all accounts used by under 16-year-olds (or those that it can't confirm used by adults). This is to comply with new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) act arriving on May 25, 2018.

"Under the terms of this new regulatory framework, we are no longer able to collect or process data from people under 16 years of age," says Adam Byrne, Chief Executive Officer, RealVNC Ltd.

GDPR is a great step forward in ensuring that all of our personal data is handled responsibly and in accordance to individual wishes. The team at RealVNC is very positive about GDPR and we whole-heartedly support the privacy objectives of this new regulation. To meet the May 2018 deadline, we have been working for more than a year to ensure that every part of our organization is aligned with our compliance obligations.

 RealVNC displaying a Raspberry Pi desktop from a Windows PC

RealVNC accounts restricted

Anybody signing up for a new RealVNC account, from now on, will be asked to confirm they are 16-years-old or over. For those users under 16, a parent or guardian is required to create the new account.

Implementing GDPR retroactively is more challenging. As Adam Byrne elaborates:

For existing VNC Connect account owners it’s a bit trickier since we never asked for age information when creating accounts in the past. This means that we will be sending out emails to all VNC Connect account holders with registered Raspberry Pi devices. Everyone will be asked to verify if they are over the age of 16. Account will remain active for those people that verify that they are over 16. If they are under 16, the existing account will be deactivated and a new account will need to be created with registration details from a parent or guardian.

Read more: Privacy changes for VNC Connect accounts on Raspberry Pi


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