Interesting development, I noticed this on Melonfarmers.co.uk but I am not sure what the Home Office means by “state of the art filtering technology” 🙂 Does such a thing exist yet? Well, I have not seen specialized software which filter out “terrorism related content” yet and I wonder what is included within that categorization. However, the categorization is bound to be broad as the Home Office press release refers to “websites that may encourage the endorsement or participation in acts of terrorism”. No one seems to know how to obtain the “supposedly free to download” state of the art software. Please do let me know if you find it so that I can do some tests and see what they really are trying to protect us from! [Yaman Akdeniz]
18 November 2008
State-of-the art filtering technology will allow parents, schools, businesses and web users to further restrict access to websites advocating or promoting terrorism.
Following joint work between the internet industry and government, web users now have the opportunity to download software allowing them to restrict access to websites that may encourage the endorsement or participation in acts of terrorism.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith announced the initiative so parents and guardians of vulnerable young people can further enhance internet safety for their home computers.
The software can be downloaded voluntarily and is available to parents, schools, colleges and businesses.
The Home Secretary’s statement
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said, ‘Stopping people becoming or supporting terrorists is the major long-term challenge we face. I want to give parents and guardians the power to decide what content is downloaded on their computers at home, which is why we have worked hard to develop these tools with various software companies.
‘Building on the work we have done around child protection on the Internet, this software is a significant step in making the Internet a safer place for vulnerable people and these tools will also offer our schools, colleges and businesses further safety nets.
‘It is reassuring that filtering software companies are taking the threat of on-line terrorism seriously and have developed the appropriate tools for all internet users. I would like to thank them for their hard work’
Notes to editors
* This software launch follows a speech the Home Secretary made on the 17 January 2008 where she outlined government engagement with the Internet industry around radicalisation and violent extremism on the net. The government has since been working with various companies that provide filtering and parental control software to ensure that their products provide a high level of protection against material that promotes or encourages terrorism.
* Many internet service providers (ISPs)offer filtering products as part of their internet access package, and broadband subscriptions in the UK usually come with free filtering options.
* In order to download the software, check whether a free filtering product is available through your broadband package or from your ISP.”