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UK government plan to crack down on apps and sites that don't tackle 'online harms'

The UK government is cracking down on social media and online sites that don't tackle "online harms".

Apps could be heavily fined or blocked in the country if they do not regulate hate crimes and abuse, such as revenge pornography and terrorist content, the Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright has warned.

Speaking to 'BBC Breakfast', he said: "The era of self-regulation for online companies is over.

"Voluntary actions from industry to tackle online harms have not been applied consistently or gone far enough."

On what penalties they could face, he added: "If you look at the fines available to the Information Commissioner around the GDPR rules, that could be up to 4% of company's turnover... we think we should be looking at something comparable here."

The proposed plans call for an independent regulator to inflict the penalties on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, as well as Snapchat and even cloud storage services.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said such apps and services have "to protect the young people they profit from".

He continued: "Despite our repeated calls to action, harmful and illegal content - including child abuse and terrorism - is still too readily available online."

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