UK to block pornography unless people opt in

Pornography will be filtered by default
Pornography will be filtered by default

The UK will pass laws that mean all pornography will be filtered by default by their internet service providers, unless people choose to opt in to adult imagery.

Along with changes that will make possession of images depicting rape a criminal offence, Prime Minister David Cameron has announced that people will have to choose to opt in to access porn.

"I want to talk about the internet," Cameron said. "The impact it is having on the innocence of our children. How online pornography is corroding childhood.

"And how, in the darkest corners of the internet, there are things going on that are a direct danger to our children, and that must be stamped out.

"I'm not making this speech because I want to moralise or scaremonger, but because I feel profoundly as a politician, and as a father, that the time for action has come. This is, quite simply, about how we protect our children and their innocence."


The decision about the default block on pornography is likely to prove contentious, with many questioning just how such a block will actually be enforced and just how effective it will prove.

ISPs are the people required to install the block, but policing the internet is easier said than done, and there are already fears about 'function creep' - ie what is blocked beginning to expand into other areas.

Other announcement made include new laws so that online streaming videos will be subject to the same restrictions as those sold in traditional ways, search engines having to put further measures in place to block searched for illegal content and CEOP being given extra powers.


Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.