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UK ISP Internet Porn Ban DELAYED AGAIN Due to Gov Admin Error

Thursday, June 20th, 2019 (7:56 am) - Score 1,848
banned and forbidden uk internet censorship

The Government’s controversial new internet age verification system, which was due to be implemented by commercial websites and “apps” that contain pornographic content (broadband ISPs would be forced to block sites that fail to comply), has once again been delayed and will not now be enforced from 15th July 2019.

The system (see our summary) – due to be overseen by the British Board of Film Classification (predicted to cost them around £4.4m) – has been beset by concerns over weak privacy controls (e.g. handing passports and payment details to companies linked with porn peddlers = dumb), cost, the potential impact upon sex workers (i.e. pushing them off-line and back onto the streets), freedom of expression and technical limitations (easy to circumvent, not least via VPN, Proxy Servers and DNS over HTTPS [DoH]).

Likewise there have been questions over whether it’s even necessary, particularly since Sky Broadband, BT, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and other ISPs already offer optional network-level filtering systems, which work just fine. Nevertheless the Government has now missed several expected launch targets and they’re about to do the same again.

Last year the UK Digital Minister, Margot James, said,”We expect it to be in force by Easter of next year [2019]” and this was recently revised to mid-July 2019. As that date approaches the Government’s Culture Secretary, Jeremy Wright MP, is today expected to inform the House of Commons that it has once again missed another launch date.

At this stage no new date is understood to have been set and a report on Sky News confirms that the issue this time appears to be bureaucratic. Apparently the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) neglected to notify the European Commission (EC) as it is required to, thus undermining the legal basis of age verification (at least for now).

Jim Killock, Executive Director of the Open Rights Group, said:

“While it’s very embarrassing to delay age verification for the third time, this is an opportunity for the Government to address the many problems that this ill-thought through policy poses.

Age verification providers have warned that they are not ready; the BBFC’s standard to protect data has been shown to be ineffective.

The Government needs to use this delay to introduce legislation that will ensure the privacy and security of online users is protected.”

As a result internet users can continue looking at jiggling buttocks and naughty sweaty body parts online for a little longer, all without being forced to share their personal / financial details or use circumvention measures. Mind you it’s still possible to do the same by flicking to late night TV shows on Channel 4/5 but that’s another story.

NOTE: According to the Government, smaller ISPs with fewer than 100,000 subscribers will not be required to enforce the DNS level blocking of adult websites.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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11 Responses
  1. Avatar Joe

    Suprised no one has mounted a legal challenge to this legislation but thats another matter.

  2. Avatar Rich

    The one silver lining to our change of prime minister might be that the next useless idiot might not be as puritanical christian as the last one and might give up on this rubbish.

    • Avatar Joe

      Actually they probably will be less but thats not to say they will stop this even if (and they probably do) think its stupid. Measures like this are political virtue signalling even if to any sane person its life ‘Brass Eye’ come to life.

    • Avatar CarlT

      If he thinks it’ll improve his vote share he’ll go up a mountain and come back with 10 commandments on slabs of stone, Rich.

      Obviously then he’ll continue with adultery he’ll just take more care over it, coveting thy neighbour’s wife is par for the course and the bearing of false witness no-one seems bothered by anymore.

  3. Avatar SuperFast Dream

    @Mark

    “As a result internet users can continue looking at jiggling buttocks and naughty sweaty body parts online for a little longer, all without being forced to share their personal / financial details or use circumvention measures. Mind you it’s still possible to do the same by flicking to late night TV shows on Channel 4/5 but that’s another story.”

    Lol, what do you do with your spare time…

  4. Avatar captain.cretin

    Red faces all round as Government arses cock up; leaving them screwed after EU rules cause them to withdraw at the last moment; and leading to smutty jokes being spaffed all over the internet.

    • Avatar Peter

      Dear EU
      We are leaving – we do not care what you think, or do, your rules are of no further interest to us. We do not need to inform you, our parliament is sovereign – so sod off.

      Regardless of the rights and wrongs of the issue, it is precisely this sort of thing requiring the UK to seek permission for the EU’s overlords (just as with the BDUK roll out delay) that led people to vote leave.

    • Avatar CarlT

      Dear Peter,

      Our sovereign Parliament agreed as part of membership of the European Union to abide by certain rules.

      As we leave the EU it is vital that the rest of the world consider us a reliable partner in the future and respecting our responsibilities while in the EU are an important part of that.

      People had all kinds of reasons to vote to leave. To suggest sovereignty was one is revisionism: most people didn’t care until campaigns shoved it down our throat and, as you said, Parliament was always sovereign.

      The UK has always been able to refuse to abide by EU rules. It just comes with consequences as breaking any treaty does.

      Hope this helps.

  5. Avatar Fred

    I have mixed feelings over this legislation. Technically it is a nightmare and will be rendered pointless if and when everybody moves to DNS over HTTPS which I believe will be become the norm.

    Clearly 95% of teenagers would have little trouble getting around the restrictions anyway. If it has a place it is for innocent young kids who don’t have the desire to see such content and parents who don’t use ISP level filtering.

    The worrying thing is that one route to getting access to porn again is through TOR which risks exposing kids to far worse material and predators.

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