ISPs to rollout default porn blocks by 2014, reveals MP

Internet service providers will need to provide switched-on parental filters as standard.

Website blocking

ISPs will be forced to offer parental filters that block pornographic content by default to new and existing customers before the end of 2013.

The announcement was made by Claire Perry MP, David Cameron's special advisor for the prevention of childhood sexualisation and commercialisation, at last Friday's Westminister eForum.

Speaking at the event, Perry said pornographic content will be blocked as standard, unless users intervene, according to a report on Wired.

"There's something different about the online world," she said. "It is anonymous, it is easy and it is efficient to share imagery."

The filters can also be made time dependent, she added, so they can be switched off during certain times of day.

A similar service has been offered to new customers by ISP Talk Talk since March 2012, before being rolled out to its existing customers more recently.

In a statement to IT Pro, Nicholas Lansman, secretary general of the Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA), said it disagreed with the Government's push for default filtering tools.

"ISPs have already taken several steps on making the internet safer, with many offering or working towards an active choice +' system," said Lansman.

"Whilst filtering has a role to play, alongside education and equipping parents with the tools they need, we remain opposed to default filtering, as it is only one part of the solution, and can be circumvented and lead to over or under blocking".

Lansman then called on the Government to provide "greater clarity" about its plans, claiming "it is not quite clear if this goes beyond what the big ISPs have already committed to," he added.

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