USK certifies parental control system for Microsoft Xbox consoles

  • has tested the Parental Control System of Microsoft’s Xbox consoles and found them suitable for use as a youth protection program.
  • The youth protection functions of the Xbox consoles meet the high German standards for protecting minors from harmful media and support parents in monitoring the gaming behavior of their children.

The has assessed the youth protection system of the Xbox consoles (the Xbox One, Xbox One X, Xbox One S, and Xbox Series X|S consoles) as suitable as a youth protection program for a closed system within the meaning of Section 11 (2) of the Interstate Treaty on the Protection of Minors in the Media (JMStV). As required by law, this certification was submitted to the Commission for the Protection of Minors in the Media (KJM). As the responsible supervisory body, the KJM confirmed that the USK had complied with the legal limits of its scope for assessment in reaching its decision.

Elisabeth Secker, Managing Director of the USK: „Together with Microsoft, the has worked intensively on further developing and optimizing the youth protection system. We are pleased that our cooperation has made it possible to improve technical measures for gamers worldwide. This shows that providers like Microsoft regard the protection of minors as a central quality feature and fulfill their social responsibility by supporting parents in media education and youth media protection.“

Thomas Kowollik, responsible for Microsoft’s consumer business in EMEA: „At Microsoft, we are deeply invested in the safety of our players. The USK’s recognition reiterates our commitment to creating safer gaming experiences for all players. We are appreciative of the close cooperation with the USK to acknowledge Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S as the first consoles with an internet browser to meet the high standards of youth protection programs according to §11 JMStV, Germany’s Interstate Treaty on the protection of minors.“

The consoles offer a wide range of customizable setting options that allow parents to age-appropriately shape their children’s gaming experience: Parents can create child accounts, add them to a family group, and thus set age-appropriate measures. These include game access restrictions, age filters, screen time settings, and spending management. Internet filters are automatically enabled for child accounts, ensuring that only age-appropriate content can be accessed. In addition to console settings, the Xbox Family Settings App provides parents with a simple tool to manage and share their children’s gaming activities. Full instructions on enabling and using age restrictions on Xbox consoles are available on the Microsoft website.

Note: The press release was written in German. In case of deviations, the German version applies.

About the USK

The Unterhaltungssoftware Selbstkontrolle (USK) is a self-regulatory organization created voluntarily by the digital games industry. It assigns age ratings to consumer video games in Germany. Being bound by both the Federal Youth Protection Act (JuSchG) and the Interstate Treaty on the Protection of Minors in the Media (JMStV), the USK is officially state-recognized. According to the Youth Protection Act, state representatives assign age ratings based on recommendations of independent youth protection experts. In addition, the USK also issues age ratings within the international IARC system for digital games and mobile apps. Numerous companies have joined the USK membership for close and permanent collaboration to keep youth protection standards in Germany high and thriving. Furthermore, the USK actively engages in media education through various initiatives, such as the so-called Parents‘ Guide (Elternratgeber), which provides information and advice about how to manage access to appropriate video games best.
An Advisory Board helps the USK in matters concerning the USK guidelines and principles, which are essential for the age rating classification procedures.

Press contact

Irina Rybin