Optus joins internet filtering trial

Summary:Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has announced that Optus will be taking part in the government's internet server provider (ISP) filtering trial.

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has announced that Optus will be taking part in the government's internet server provider (ISP) filtering trial.

Stephen Conroy at the ATUG Awards earlier this year
(Credit: Suzanne Tindal/ZDNet.com.au)

Optus will be filtering out sites on the Australian Communication and Media Authority's (ACMA) blacklist, according to Conroy's release, but won't be filtering peer-to-peer networks.

"The participation of Optus will help ensure the government obtains robust results from the pilot, which will inform the evidence-based development of our ISP filtering policy," Conroy said in a statement.

Optus joined the seven other ISPs previously announced as being part of the pilot: Primus Telecommunications, Highway 1, Nelson Bay Online, Netforce, OMNIconnect, TECH 2U and Webshield.

More ISPs could also be signed on according to Conroy, with consultations to continue with other ISPs.

Despite the fact that Telstra had not applied to be part of the pilot, Conroy said that the government was working with the telco on the technical testing, not involving customers, of filtering technologies.

iiNet recently made a public exit from the process to become part of the trial, after a list which had been called the ACMA blacklist was leaked via Wikileaks. This sparked public concern that the blacklist had sites on it which did not contain refused classification material, something which Conroy has said the filter will target.

Conroy also today announced the publication of the ACMA's second report on internet filtering technologies and measures for achieving online safety. According to Conroy, the report found that ISP level filtering "plays a valuable role in preventing inadvertent access to online child sexual abuse material".

Topics: Telcos, Government : AU, Legal


Suzanne Tindal cut her teeth at ZDNet.com.au as the site's telecommunications reporter, a role that saw her break some of the biggest stories associated with the National Broadband Network process. She then turned her attention to all matters in government and corporate ICT circles. Now she's taking on the whole gamut as news editor for t... Full Bio

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