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