BT share price: Group unveils network-level filter

on Dec 17, 2013
Updated: Oct 21, 2019
Listen, Tuesday, December 17: BT Group (LON:BT.A) has launched its new network-based filter designed to prevent children from accessing inappropriate content online. With its new Parental Controls tool, BT joins rivals British Sky Broadcasting Corp (LON:BSY) and TalkTalk (LON:TALK) which have already implemented their own family-friendly filters after the UK government called for internet service providers to filter adult content ‘by default’. BT’s share price has advanced about 0.3 percent in morning trading in London today.

**BT introduces default adult content filter**
BT’s new filter announced on Friday will cover any internet enabled device using home broadband, including PCs, laptops, games consoles, tablets and smartphones. BT said that new customers would have to make a choice whether or not to activate the parental controls when setting up their internet connection for the first time. The option of having the controls implemented is pre-selected and customers will have to confirm that choice or opt not to switch on the controls.

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BT Group will be contacting its existing customers who will have to make a decision whether or not to set up the parental controls.
Customers who opt to have the filter switched on can choose between three set filter levels, namely strict, moderate and light. Customers will be able to add or remove websites from the filtering lists.
“BT takes the issue of online child protection extremely seriously and we are very pleased to be able to launch the whole-home filter to help parents keep their families safe online,” Pete Oliver, managing director of commercial marketing at BT, said in a company statement. “It adds to the many tools we already make available for free to our customers.”

The BBC reported that the National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command (CEOP) welcomed the move by BT.
**Government pressure**

BT’s new parental controls come after last month the UK government urged the four big internet provides – BT, BSkyB, TalkTalk and Virgin – to introduce network filters which can block inappropriate content from all online devices within the home.
BSkyB introduced its own internet protection tool offering family-friendly filters last month. Sky Broadband Shield, which runs filters across all web-enabled devices, allows customers to filter out websites under ten main categories, including pornography, suicide and self-harm. TalkTalk has offered a filter blocking adult sites by default for more than two years while Virgin is expected to follow suit in 2014.

The Telegraph yesterday quoted a recent report by Ofcom as revealing that only 43 percent of parents with children aged five to 15 had any filters in place on the family PC or laptop, with 13 percent admitting they either did not know how to install controls or did not know it was possible.
**As of 10:13 UTC, buy BT shares at 373.30p.**
**As of 10:13 UTC, sell BT shares at 373.00p.**
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