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Using age estimation on online platforms that distribute mature content can ensure that children are protected from content that would be inappropriate for them.

Protecting our Children with AI-Powered Age Estimation Solutions

Author: admin | 08 Jul 2024

“Are you over the age of 18?” is a sentence most of us browsing the internet have seen many many times. And yet, can you think of a single instance where someone actually answered ‘no’ to this question? Chances are, you can’t. So what’s the point of it?

The current solutions employed on the majority of websites for verifying age seem practically useless. This is where age estimation solutions come in. Modern artificial intelligence-powered software works much better to accurately identify whether an individual is old enough to be allowed access to the information they are trying to see.

And that’s not all it can do either, let us explain.

The Fundamental Problem with Age-Gating

Age gating is like a toddler walking up to a gate guard at an establishment and saying “I’m 26”, and the guard lets them in.

For the overwhelming majority of websites that contain some kind of mature content, the only measure for age verification and detection online implemented in them is quite literally asking the user whether they are above the age of 18. This method, often referred to simply as age gating, could be something as simple as a yes/no prompt, or rarely a prompt to input your date of birth.

As stated, a child or teenager simply has to click the button that says ‘yes’ (or input a much older age than they actually are) to pass these ‘checks’ and get through. There are zero consequences to lying, so more or less everyone does.

So why do these platforms implement this kind of check in the first place? Implementing such a measure allows the platform or website to remove liability from themselves in case someone does try to call them out for underage viewership. The website can simply state that the user incorrectly stated their age, and so they are the ones liable.

All of this highlights the fact that the current measures for protecting children on the overwhelming majority of websites are largely ineffective. 

Modern methods attempt more accurate age verification vs age gating, which simply seeks to remove responsibility. While absolute age verification is not currently possible, we can provide a highly accurate estimate of an individual’s age using modern AI technology.

Actual Protection – AI Age Estimation

In age estimation, the guard of the establishment would clearly be able to tell that the person trying to get in is not old enough, and refuse them entry.

Thankfully, there is a solution in modern artificial intelligence technology that can solve this problem. AI age estimation technology combines artificial intelligence, computer vision, and face recognition tech to form a piece of software that can accurately estimate an individual’s age.

Such a system utilizes machine learning to create an algorithm, trained on large datasets of images in which the person’s age is clearly marked. This makes it able to understand how faces and facial features of people of different ages look like.

The Age Estimation Process

So, during a facial age estimation process, the system utilizes facial recognition technology to identify and subsequently map specific facial landmarks – like the corners of your eyes, or the boundaries of your lips; things that change as you age.

The software then analyzes these mapped features, using what it has learned about how faces work from the training data, to create an estimate of how old the person inside of the image is. The accuracy of this result can of course vary with the same things that facial recognition would normally vary because of: lighting, head angle, image quality, and so on.

So, based on its analysis, the AI face age detector will provide an estimated range of age that the person most likely falls inside of. 

When is Verifying Age Important?

People tend to underestimate just how important making sure that the person viewing a piece of content is of age through something like facial age estimation is. To give you a better idea, here are just some of the many activities that are commonly conducted online nowadays, that need effective age detection measures:

Adult Content Gating

The most obvious use of course of age estimation online is to properly and effectively gate content that is not suitable for people under a certain age. Using an AI-based age estimation system ensures that children cannot get through by simply clicking a button.

Alcohol and Tobacco Sales

As the world moves towards online shopping through e-commerce platforms, it is no surprise that alcohol and tobacco-derived products are also highly available online. It becomes extremely important for such websites to be able to verify a customer’s identity with a high level of precision, something normal age-gating of course does not allow.

Measures like AI age estimation can thus provide a great alternative. Combined with other checks like document verification can allow for effective protection of children and underage individuals from these substances.

Find Out More: Maryland implements mandatory age verification protocols for tobacco sales, aiming to enforce stricter compliance measures and ensure legal adherence to age restrictions in retail transactions.


Pension Process

You might be surprised at how common pension fraud is. People take advantage of these systems to claim pension benefits using false identities or misrepresenting their age to qualify for such benefits earlier than they should.

Using age estimation solutions can help to prevent the possibility of someone taking advantage of a system meant to help people in their old age. As such a system would be able to guess the applicant’s age to a high degree of accuracy, there is little chance of any fraud being committed. Continued checks can help to ensure that relatives or family members aren’t taking advantage of potentially deceased individuals’ pension benefits.


Using a face age detector online becomes highly significant when you think about how a lot of gambling and betting in the modern day is done on online websites. Children are often unable to tell the difference between these and regular games, creating quite a problematic situation that can also lead to legal trouble for the company. Thus, using age-detecting solutions becomes highly important to protect both the children and the company itself.

Is Age Estimation Just a Restriction Tool?

You might think of modern artificial intelligence-based age detection solutions as only to be used to restrict and protect minors from accessing adult content. But, that isn’t even close to the only benefit that such a solution can provide.

This technology can actually enhance other domains in many unique ways:

Age estimation systems can effectively be utilized beyond security purposes for things like age-specific advertising, enhanced retail experiences, tailored care for patients.

Age-Specific Advertising

People of different age groups of course require different marketing strategies, perspectives, and goals. Utilizing age estimation technology can help to tailor advertising to the individual who is standing in front of, say, a screen inside of a store, or at a subway station. 

The screen would dynamically alter either the contents of the ad or change the ad presented itself, depending on the age of the individual viewing it. Marketing companies can create more accurate customer personas so that they can create marketing material more aptly targeted toward their specific audience.

Personalized Retail Experiences

Using an age scanner inside of a store can help to highly enhance customer experiences. For example, a store might detect a customer’s age and then make recommendations to them based on what is popular for people in their age group. This can also be easily extended to online shopping platforms as well.

Such a system can also help to provide more tailored customer service experiences depending on the person’s age. For example, younger people might enjoy more digital experiences, while older customers might find traditional in-person service more preferable.

Tailored Patient Care

Believe it or not, age estimation can help clinicians and doctors to provide better healthcare to their patients as well. In areas where there tend to be high waiting times for doctoral visits, age estimation can be used to make sure someone who is older care is automatically prioritized, and that proper initial care is provided by nurses or other staff.

Such systems can also help to automatically flag screenings or other measures that would be beneficial for someone of that age. For example, older women might be recommended mammograms or osteoporosis, while older men might be recommended preventative heart evaluations.

Discover More: Improving Texas alcohol laws with digital age verification measures to ensure compliance and enhance accountability in alcohol sales and distribution

Stay Regulatory Compliant with Facia

Using a facial age estimation system helps you to stay compliant with the increasingly stringent policies, measures, and laws that are being implemented across the world to protect children from adult content online. Failure to comply with such policies can often result in quite heavy penalties, usually either legal or financial, or both, for the company involved. Facia’s age estimation solutions can accurately guess your user’s age and protect minors from seeing content that they shouldn’t.

To learn how Facia’s solutions can complement your business, contact us today!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is age estimation?

Age estimation is the use of advanced technological tools like artificial intelligence and facial recognition to estimate an individual’s age, based on how certain facial landmarks and characteristics they have look like. This can include things like wrinkles, lines on the outer edges of your eyes and lips, and so on. An AI algorithm trained on large datasets of faces with ages identified is able to use this information to identify the most likely age, or age range of the input face.

How does age estimation work?

Age estimation works off of the same basic mechanism that facial recognition systems work off of. An algorithm is trained on a large dataset of faces of many different ages, which are clearly marked.

When presented with an input face, the system uses face detection and computer vision to detect and extract certain facial landmarks like wrinkles, lines on the outside of the eyes and so on.The system is able to estimate based on these characteristics of the input face, the most likely age range that the person falls in.

What are the benefits of Age Estimation?

Age estimation is an effective tool first and foremost for protecting children from mature and adult content on online platforms, especially when compared to conventional age-gating, which is trivial to bypass for a child.

But this tech can also do a lot more, including being effectively utilized for better marketing and advertising, creating personalized experiences for customers in shops and online stores, to provide better healthcare for patients in hospitals and a lot more.

What is the future of Age Estimation?

Age estimation will most likely supersede conventional age-gating mechanisms on most if not all online websites and platforms that distribute content meant for people above a certain age. In addition, we can expect to see wider users in all domains where knowing the demographics of users or customers can be beneficial, like advertising, marketing, research and more. The relative ease of use of this kind of mechanism compared to other methods of checking individuals will most likely be the key reason for this growth.