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Ground breaking Internet security for families launched by Claranet Soho

by david.nunes

Ground breaking Internet security for families launched by Claranet Soho

89% of parents are looking for protection against hackers, viruses, cyber-bullying, pornography and cyber-predators

A new Internet security system that requires no technical or installation knowledge, has been launched by Claranet Soho, positioning the ISP alongside TalkTalk in offering an opt-in, network-level filtering service for its customers.

However, unlike other providers, Childsafe subscribers can choose exactly what services or content are allowed, safe in the knowledge that everyone using a home computer will be protected from websites, chat-rooms, other unwanted Internet services and Instant Messenger, which other services do not block. Furthermore, Childsafe offers protection against viruses, worms, phishing attacks or spyware.

Claranet Soho has undertaken a comprehensive research project* into the current perceptions of parents with children under-16 toward online protection. A staggering 84% of the 1,000 parents questioned believe that the Government should now have the legal powers to intervene if the ISPs themselves fail to self-regulate and control content. Claranet Soho has already taken the initiative by launching Childsafe.

Jason Keen, Director, Claranet Soho, stated: “This is the only service on the market that allows parents who are less technically skilled to have confidence that their home Internet connection is protected. This is done through ‘channels’ created by what are called a ‘Claranet Guardian’, an organisation that the Childsafe subscriber trusts such as a school, NGO or religious body, to recommend content. Subscribers can even create their own channel of content by simply selecting their own categories. Put simply, this means that a single, non-technical decision is all that is required to have a safe home Internet.

“According to our own research 89% of parents with children under-16, believe ISPs should be providing better support in terms of Internet safety. In fact when questioned further 76% of the sample we questioned are concerned about their children viewing explicit content including pornography and graphic violence,” he continued.

MP Claire Perry, chair of the Independent Parliamentary Inquiry into Online Child Protection, has accused Internet providers of “dragging their feet” and being “complicit” in allowing children to view pornography.

Shy Keenan and Dr Sara Payne MBE, from the Phoenix Chief Advocates Consultancy, have recently co-founded the self-help victim advocacy group (www.thephoenixpost.com).

Dr Sara Payne MBE states: “When I am walking down the high street with my children, we do not hold up placards of our personal photographs and nor are we exposed to shop fronts or images that are sexually explicit or otherwise inappropriate for children. We need to make sure that we can create a similar environment on the Internet – one that prevents strangers from seeing our personal information on social media; and where children cannot gain access to areas that could cause them harm. As a parent, I need to be able to ring-fence what my children see as I already do in the ‘real’ world.”

Shy Keenan added: “As every parent knows, their kids understand more about computers than they do. By developing a way for parents to exercise choice over what can be accessed on the Internet without them having to be technically savvy, helps to create greater peace of mind and is an important step in the online child protection fight.”

Childsafe features

· No installation or technical knowledge required

· Subscribers can choose an organisation they trust to provide a safe, appropriate channel and thus determining what internet sites can be accesses

· Sites can be blocked or unblocked in a simple, secure manner

· Automatic protection against viruses, malware, phishing and worms

· Protect Internet chat, video calls, file-sharing and social networking; not just basic websites

· Will protect PCs, laptops and wifi-enabled mobile devices which are connecting to the protected Internet service

· Over 140 categories are available for those requiring even more control

· Users can also define their own set of available content themselves quickly and easily

· 450 million categorised URLs, 6 billion web pages, 200 languages checked

· Continuing review of URLs is on-going to add new blocked sites to the URL list

*Research methodology

Claranet Soho commissioned Censuswide to conduct a series of questions of parents with children under the age of 16. The sample size was 1,000 and the fieldwork was conducted in June 2012.

The findings of that research are as follows:

· 89% of parents with children under the age of 16 believe that the ISPs themselves should be providing better support in terms of Internet safety

· Of those questioned some 53% already have some form of Internet parental control in place within the home, although within the same sample 20% claimed that their child never went online!

· Of the biggest concerns confronting parents viewing pornography or violence is the biggest issue at 76%; meeting strangers online at 65%, cyber bullying at 47%

· A staggering 84% support the view that the Government should have the powers to intervene should the ISPs fail to implement an appropriate solution

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