The ACMA administers the national regulatory scheme for online content, and provides consumer information about safe use of the internet and mobile phones.
The ACMA's activities are designed to address community concerns about offensive and illegal material online, and in particular, to protect children from exposure to material that is unsuitable for them. More information is available on the Cybersmart website.
The ACMA's role includes:
- investigating complaints about online content and internet gambling services
- encouraging the development of codes of practice and monitoring those codes
- advising the community on online safety issues that include theft prevention, internet dumping, and safety for children.
Spam and e-Security
The ACMA is responsible for enforcing the Spam Act and actively works to fight spam in Australia. Under the Spam Act 2003 it is illegal to send, or cause to be sent, unsolicited commercial electronic messages. The Act covers email, instant messaging, SMS and MMS (text and image-based mobile phone messaging) of a commercial nature.
The ACMA also plays an important role in e-security in Australia, gathering evidence and assisting in protecting Australians from computer fraud and identity theft. Further information is available on the ACMA spam and e-Security pages.
Social networking - staying safe online
Online social networking can be a great way to exchange ideas, information, photos, games and music with friends, family and other web users. You can create personal profiles and communities, expand your networks and pursue new interests. While you’re enjoying the benefits of social networking, remember that putting your personal information online does come with some risks. For practical tips on how to stay safe online, visit the social networking safety page.
Online dating can be a great way to meet new people, make new friends, and maybe even find that special connection online. The ACMA's Online dating - staying safe online information provides advice to help reduce the risk of giving away too much personal information to people you may not really know.
Social networking – Could what you're doing online be illegal?
While the internet can be a great place to interact and allows free expression, it can be useful to know how free online expression can sometimes have unexpected consequences for the user, including getting into trouble with the law. Could what you're doing online be illegal?
Social networking - Location-based services
In the world of social networking, a location-based service, also known as geospatial social networking, is an information service that uses technology to find your mobile phone's geographic location. These services can be fun and useful, but it is important to be aware of the potential risks associated with disclosing your whereabouts online.
Excessive internet use
The popularity of the internet continues to grow because of the many ways users can interact, be entertained, informed, contacted, and occupied. Users connect through virtual worlds, blogs, games, subscription services and social networking sites. Technology gives users the ability to stay connected and contactable 24 hours a day. However, being connected 24 hours and can lead to excessive internet use which can have a negative impact on the well being of the user and his/her friends and family.
Smartphone user information
A Smartphone is a mobile phone that offers advanced features and can function like a computer. Just by using some of the features on a Smartphone users may be sending and disclosing information they're not aware of. This may lead to privacy and security risks and unexpected high bills.