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Seven in 10 Sky broadband customers choose to keep adult content filter

Tuesday, July 14th 2015 by Ellen Branagh

At least 70% of Sky broadband customers who were automatically given its adult content blocker have chosen to keep it, the company has revealed.

In January Sky said it was going to automatically switch on its Broadband Shield for all of its customers. They could then opt-out of the filter if they chose.

When it first introduced Sky Broadband Shield in 2013, Sky asked its existing customers whether or not to turn the filtering tool on, and new customers had to choose whether to turn it on at activation.

But in January, the provider decided to roll it out to all customers who had not yet made a choice, making its default position ‘on’, saying it was the easiest to way to make sure people are kept as safe as possible.

Customers could then choose to ‘adjust or decline’ the service at any time.

Giving an update six months on, Sky Broadband director Lyssa McGowan said the rollout had been completed and 70% of customers had chosen to keep the service, with the majority keeping parental controls as well as its malware and phishing protection.

During that six-month period, Sky received just 27 calls from customers asking for help, she said, indicating the simplicity and user-friendly approach of its Broadband Shield.

The free tool has adult content filters, as well as a ‘watershed’ feature that allows users to select different age rating options for different times of day.

'Safer online'

Ms McGowan said: “As more customers choose Sky for better quality and value, we are committed to ensuring everyone can choose to enjoy the internet in a safe environment.

“We’re proud of Sky Broadband Shield and the approach we took to ensure that millions more people are safer online.”

The update comes just days after Sky launched what it called its best-ever fibre broadband offer of free fibre broadband for 12 months.

Writing in a blog post, Ms McGowan said: “As more and more people choose Sky Broadband thanks to great service and offers like this, it becomes even more important to ensure the entire family can enjoy the internet safely.

“Of course with our diverse base of millions of broadband customers, we knew some wouldn’t want or need Sky Broadband Shield.

“Customers can activate, adjust or decline it at any time depending on the level of protection they need for their home.

“And for those who hadn’t made a decision yet, the approach we took meant that the default position was the safest one, so no families were left unprotected unless they chose to be.”

Sky Broadband Shield is part of the company’s commitment to internet safety, it said. It also supports Internet Matters, a not-for-profit organisations which offers advice and guidance for parents on how to keep their children safe online.

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