Sky, the UK’s second biggest broadband provider, will automatically block customers from accessing gambling websites in the following days.
The company which has 5.7 million subscribers will apply Sky Broadband Shield to all customers who have joined since November 2013, when the filtering service was launched. Those that wish to access gambling sites before 9pm will have to change their Shield settings.
Sky Broadband Shield gives Sky customers control of their household’s internet access by allowing them to filter what sites can be accessed. As of January 1, households’ watershed setting will be set at 13 (for those 13 and older) until 9pm, when it will switch to 18.
The company said that of the customers who were members before November 2013, some 62 per cent have retained some form of parental control.
“Customers have really come to appreciate the value of Sky Broadband Shield in protecting their families from unwanted and potentially harmful internet content,” said Lyssa McGowan, Sky’s director of communications products.
“What we have learnt is that as well as the flexibility to set the right level of protection for their homes, they also want us to make it as easy as possible for them.
“The simplest thing we can do to help them is to automatically turn on filtering and then allow customers to easily choose and change their settings. This means they can have complete peace of mind that they will protected online from the word ‘go’.”
In 2013, the UK government first announced its internet filtering measures, which aim to protect children of all ages from content the government deems to be of an ‘adult’ nature, including gambling and pornography.