Sky broadband Shield : The Ultimate Guide

sky broadband shield

For customers with Sky Broadband, this privacy and control tool is the perfect for families, or adults, to make your internet browsing a safer place.

The default setup for the Broadband Shield will enable filters for users of mobile devices that are under the age of 18.

Adults will automatically gain unfiltered access on the internet as part of the default settings that come with the tool.

What is Sky Broadband Shield?

Sky Broadband Shield is a high-end privacy protection tool from Sky to its Broadband users. This tool comes with the following user helpful features:


  • Protection against virus and malware
  • Protection from objectionable content
  • Parental Control

Login to Sky Broadband Shield

To make any changes to your privacy settings or setup shield settings, you need to login to your account first. To log in to the Shield settings do the following:

  1. Go to Sky Website
  2. Click on the "Manage"
  3.  When Sign In button prompts, put in your Email ID or username
  4. Enter password and press "Sign In"
  5. Enter the shield settings by clicking on the icon.

Sky Broadband Shield Settings

This tool is free of charge for customers who have Sky Broadband in their homes and can be installed easily on any laptop, tablet or mobile device where one would regularly search the internet.

Broadband settings are easy for customers to amend. To change your desired privacy and parental Settings, you can follow these steps:

sky broadband shield settings

Source: sky.com

  • Visit www.sky.com and Sign in with your Sky ID
  • Next, select the “Broadband and Talk” icon and after that click “Broadband Shield”.
  • The age rating options will come up
  • Make the privacy settings and save it.

The age rating options are convenient for families and couples alike. The choices that you can make are as follows:

sky filtering

Source: Sky.com

•    PG (Fully Filtered Content – Suitable for Everyone)

•    13 (Suitable for Teenagers and everyone older)

•    18 (Suitable for Adults only)

•    Custom 

These features are efficient for if customers would only like to block certain kinds of websites, such as those that promote pornography and violence, for example.

The custom settings will allow Sky Broadband Customers to see which sites are blocked, and which sites are unblocked, with both categories listed on the user interface.

So, here you can choose any desired settings and click save. In the settings page, you can even block and allow specific websites.

Usefulness of Custom Settings 

The Watershed settings are also a great tool for families who may have their children going to bed at certain times and would like to keep devices filtered until such times.

Customers can simply choose the hours they would like the Watershed to start and end – this will filter out 18+ Games, sites and videos.

Quick Fact. If there are specific websites that a customer would like to block or allow, they can simply copy and paste the website’s URL into the ‘Block and Allow Websites’ feature.

This can be useful for sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, which, although they are 13+ websites by standard, are notorious for having millions of users that are underage.

Simply by blocking these sites, parents can keep their children protected from explicit and sensitive language and content.

Turn Off Sky Shield

turn off sky shield

To turn off Sky Shiled is very easy. For this you need to visit your Sky account and follow the on screen steps.

To turn off do the following:

  • Log in as normal with their Sky ID
  • Click the ‘Switch Off Sky Broadband Shield’ icon.
  • To turn it on click "turn on icon".

Turning the shield on and off may lead to a slight delay before the filtering kicks in.

For example, if you turn it on, it can take up to 15 minutes before explicit and 18+ (or 13+) sites, are filtered out for younger users – So please bear this in mind.

The main benefit of having the turn on and off button on the tool is that, as parents, you can have children who go to bed at different times each day.

So users will need an option to configure website filtering, and have the ability to disable this once their children have fallen asleep, for example.

Sky Broadband Shield Bypass

Eventually, the time comes where a teenager will want to view explicit sites and play 18+ games, or you could just be a parent wanting to bypass before your shield turns off again after a certain time in the night.

sky broadband shield bypass

This means you will need to bypass the tool. It is actually quite a simple workaround and involves DNS Servers.

Here is the simple guide for Windows Users:

  • Open Computer Settings
  • Select ‘Network and Internet’
  • Select ‘Change adapter options’
  • Right-click on the network your computer is connected to and select ‘Properties’
  • Double click the item in the properties list that reads ‘Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)’
  • Select ‘Use the following DNS Servers at the bottom of the pop-up.
  • Next, enter the following into the boxes:
  • Preferred DNS Server: 8.8.8.8   Alternate DNS Server: 8.8.4.4

By changing the computer’s DNS server addresses to the following, you will be searching the web through Google’s DNS servers, instead of those that are maintained by Sky.

Is Sky the Only Broadband Provider Doing This?

Quite expectedly – All Broadband providers in the UK have their own (optional) Broadband Shield tools built-in.

However, this  tool from Sky is automatically switched on for Sky Broadband customers in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, meaning families are instantly protected.

Quick Fact. Internet Service Providers such as TalkTalk, BT and Virgin Media will all automatically opt their new customers into the filtering programme.

However, this tool is the only default Shield for peace of mind, knowing filtering is already enabled and no settings need to be changed beforehand.

  • TalkTalk has the Home Safe service - Which offers the choice of 9 categories to block/unblock.
  • Virgin Media Broadband has the Web Safe Tool – This has the option to put on a virus-safe block or a child-safe block, both will protect devices against either malicious or explicit and adult websites.
  • BT has a filter control tool. By using this tool users can choose between light, moderate and strict filtering for internet browsing activity

Extra Security Tips

It is highly recommended, for both Sky Broadband Customers, and Customers of other Internet and Broadband Service Providers, to remember that without any filters enabled, there can be a high risk of malware coming into contact with your PC.

sky shield tips

This can cause harmful viruses to come onto your PC if you do not have an active internet security plan.

Internet security such as Kaspersky and Norton Security are great additional tools to invest in to ensure your tool is effective, even when you set your filters off.

Quick Fact. Remember, Customers can control hour by hour, when the Shield is to be turned on and off, the default time given is 9pm until 5:30am the following morning.

However, this can be changed using the option to move the on and off times by half hour increments

What you can Control?

If as a parent, you are looking to filter out specific websites for your children, perhaps it would be a great idea to take a look at the list of the top visited websites globally, check the link out here - Alexa Top Sites.

To get you started, think Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.

In terms of the types of sites that the tool will block, here is a list of what’s under your control as a Sky Customer:

  • Anonymizers, File sharing & Hacking
  • Cyber Bullying
  • Dating
  • Drugs & Criminal Skills
  • Pornography & Adult
  • Suicide & Self-Harm
  • Weapons & Violence, Gore & Hate

All of these types of sites will be automatically blocked between 9 pm - 5:30 am under default settings, these are the types of websites that will also be filtered out when the PG 13 rating is enabled for devices with the tool.

Sky’s Shield Flaws

Filters on sites for betting really should be blocked on tool as gambling addiction can be a very easy problem to fall into, especially for younger people who will not yet understand the effects of throwing money away so quickly.

sky shield flaws

The Broadband Shield is definitely not perfect, but for most families, it is a great tool for picking out the vast majority of obvious explicit sites.

The major flaws that the broadband shield has are as follows:

#  Cache Data

It must be that for the Shield itself to work, laptops and other internet enabled devices will need to have their cache cleared.

#  Violation of Shield

There have been reports of users still being able to access sites such as Facebook up to an hour after turning on their Shield.

#  Filter Bypass

Some others problems have become apparent during Sky’s servicing of their Broadband Shield, it is easier than expected to bypass the filters when searching the internet.

For example, if a user was to search something like ‘xxx’ into google images, there would still be fairly explicit images revealed, this is because it does not represent key words like ‘sex’ or ‘porn’ (pornography).

#  Automatic Filter Flaw

An equally detrimental flaw also showed that the tool fails to automatically filter out gambling sites, now, considering Sky has its own Betting Site, it would make sense.

Is Sky broadband Shield Any Good?

The protection tool provided by the Company has plenty of benefits for its users, and some of these includes

  • Automatic blocking of dangerous websites
  • Protection from malware, viruses
  • Site phishing
  • Parental Control

Any device that is being used, even if it is a games console – will be automatically protected against harmful sources.

Currently, the default filtering will be automatically disabled for new users from after 9 pm, and until 5:30 am the next day. Before 9 pm is where all devices will be restricted to “PG-13” content, then the devices will basically unlock once the time reaches 9 pm each evening.

Final Verdict

Overall, if you are a family with children who are younger or in their teenage years, the tool is a must have. It is completely free with the purchase of a Sky Broadband Subscription.

The fact that it can be used on all kinds of devices, such as laptops, tablets, phones and gaming consoles, is a life saver, as more young people are branching out the source of their online activities.

If you’re looking to switch, or simply setup broadband for your home, Sky Broadband is arguably the best option. Sky Broadband Shield will be one of the many add-ons available to you after you sign into a contract.

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