Stop the presses! 5G is safe, experts say

It's fair to say that there have been concerns about the possible health effects of increased exposure to electromagnetic radiation in the 5G era, but the international body in charge of setting limits on exposure to radiation has issued updated guidelines that, if adhered to, would make 5G services perfectly safe.

The International Commission on Non‐Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) said it hopes the guidelines "will help put people at ease" about 5G technologies. The main change from the previous guidelines is that they now provide improved protection for 5G technologies that use frequencies above 6GHz. BBC News pointed out that the guidelines do impose "more conservative limits" on radiation from handsets when they connect to higher-frequency 5G networks.

The GSMA has, as any industry body representing 5G service providers would, welcomed the report as "good news for 5G," although the association was keen to point out that the updated guidelines "have been anticipated by the industry for some time and test methods exist to ensure the compliance of 5G devices in the market."

5G rollouts have certainly proven controversial on a global scale, with fears that the networks could cause cancer of other illnesses. Indeed, Dr Eric van Rongen, the chairman of ICNIRP, could be accused of understatement with the comment that "we know parts of the community are concerned about the safety of 5G."

For example, there have been recent demonstrations against 5G in Brussels, while rollouts have been held up in European countries such as Switzerland.

Even scientists are said to have called for more research into health effects to be carried out, and some have raised doubts about the methods used by ICNIRP to assess the effects of RF radiation.

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— Anne Morris, Contributing Editor, Light Reading

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