Parental controls on your home internet

Did you know that many internet service providers in the UK offer free parental controls? If you’re a BT, Sky, TalkTalk or Virgin Media customer, you can decide which kind of online content your family can access. As you have to choose to switch on these controls, here’s a quick overview of each one and links to more information.

BT 

BT Parental Controls come free with any BT broadband package. There are three pre-set filters, plus the option to create your own and even set filters for certain times. As well as safeguarding any device connected to your BT Hub at home, BT Parental Controls work at BT wifi hotspots (eg in cafes).

Find out more on the BT website.

Virgin Media 

Virgin Media’s Web Safe works on any device that is connected to its home network. Provided free in broadband packages, it includes Child Safe, which helps to block websites unsuitable for younger users, and Virus Safe, which blocks websites that may have viruses and other security issues.

Find out more on the Virgin Media website.

Sky 

Sky Broadband Shield works on all devices connected to your Sky home broadband and comes at no extra cost. You can choose between three age categories (PG, 13 and 18) or customise the protection according to your needs. The Watershed feature lets you set tighter controls at specific times of the day, when your child might be online.

Find out more on the Sky website.

Vodafone 

Parental controls are available to anyone with a Vodafone Broadband service and protect all devices connected to your home network. Once you’ve opted in, the controls prevent access to inappropriate online content, such as violence and gambling, as well as to websites that could pose security threats.

Find out more on the Vodafone website.

TalkTalk 

HomeSafe is free to all TalkTalk customers and lets you customise filtering preferences from nine different categories and block individual websites. The Homework Time tool restricts access to content that might distract children during core homework hours.

Find out more on the TalkTalk website.

Internet Matters 

Launched in 2014, Internet Matters provides advice for parents about online safety and a range of other issues relating to digital technology.

Find out more on the Internet Matters website.