Technical hitch puts a hole in the network-level web filtering service.
In May of this year, TalkTalk launched HomeSafe, a web filtering option that allows users to block malicious and unsavory content from a server level. Aimed at people looking to protect all of the PCs, smartphones and additional connected devices on their network from malware and prevent access to certain websites (such as porn or Facebook), the idea is that TalkTalk can block sites for all devices connected to your network, as opposed to you having to block it on each individual computer, and you don't need to install any extra software. All fine and dandy, but what happens if TalkTalk's service hasn't blocked out the content you want it to?
It seems HomeSafe has suffered a little hiccup. The Telegraph reports that Cherith Hately, an IT expert and mother of three teenagers in south London, last week tested the service only to discover that HomeSafe was still allowing access to Pornhub. In what appears to be a technical error, Hately says the HomeSafe blocking page has been relegated to a small advertising slot on the Pornhub page.
"The 'you have been blocked' page has been diverted to an advertising slot within the Pornhub homepage thus opening access to it," she's quoted as saying, adding that TalkTalk should inform its customers of the issue and warn them that extra monitoring is necessary for the moment.
TalkTalk says it is aware of the issue and that technicians are working to fix it. The spokesman added that TalkTalk was 'the most effective' way of protecting children from harmful content but admitted that no one technical solution can solve the issue child safety online.
"As the only network-level filter, TalkTalk’s HomeSafe is the most effective way of protecting children from content parents consider harmful," the spokesman said. "While no technical solution alone is able to solve the issue of child internet safety or be a substitute for parental supervision, we firmly believe that HomeSafe is a step in the right direction."