Inquiry into Wi-Fi health risks launchedGovernment study follows growing concern

16 October 2007

 

laptop on table being used

The government is to carry out a study into the health effects of wireless (Wi-Fi) computer networks.

It follows growing concerns that children, in particular, could be at risk from radio signals emitted from these networks.

Earlier this year there were calls for children to keep a safe distance from the embedded antennas on Wi-Fi enabled laptops until more research had been carried out.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) has now announced a two-year inquiry to look at levels of exposure in schools, homes and offices, where around two million Wi-Fi networks have been installed over the last two years.

Current guidelines

The agency says that current information shows the signals used are well within guidelines issued by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation.

The HPA added that while there was no particular reason why schools and others should not continue to use Wi-Fi or other wireless networks, the area required further research.

Professor Pat Troop, Chief Executive of the Health Protection Agency, said: ‘There has not been extensive research into what people's exposures actually are to this new technology and that is why we are initiating this new programme of research and analyses.

‘We have good scientific reasons to expect the results to be re-assuring and we will publish our findings.’