Online child protection – TalkTalk takes action

Recently, the Government announced that it will be consulting internet service providers with regards to blocking online access to inappropriate materials, thereby protecting children and young adults from accessing websites which are considered inappropriate.

Talkalk, one of the top 4 ISPs, has now taken action and is offering all 4 million of its current subscribers a blanket opt-out for pornography sites.  The opt-out will cover each computer, games console or ereader accessing the internet via the family broadband connection.  TalkTalk expects that more than 1m of its customers will sign up to the opt-out by the end of this financial year and wants to extend the service so that each of its customers has to choose their settings on an annual basis.

New customers will be forced to make the decision to opt-out or not when they initially subscribe to the TalkTalk service.

Other ISPs will now be under pressure to follow suit.

Dido Harding, Chief Exec of TalkTalk, said that the company had spent £20m on the safeguarding system and that competitors are being slow to realise that society as a whole cares strongly about the issue of online child protection.  She continued that making the internet safe for children was as important now as road safety was in the 1970s.