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Launch Of Watchdog Solutions In Australia Provides Business Opportunities For ISPs Under New Filtering Rules

Watchdog International Ltd has launched its hosted Watchdog suite of filtered Internet services to support Australia’s 800 plus ISPs in their moves to comply with the new Internet filtering rules announced yesterday by the Federal Government.
  • 16 December, 2009 17:44

<p>Watchdog International Ltd has launched its hosted Watchdog suite of filtered Internet services to support Australia’s 800 plus ISPs in their moves to comply with the new Internet filtering rules announced yesterday by the Federal Government.</p>
<p>The Hosted Watchdog Services (HWS) are the first cost-effective, cloud-based ISP filtering systems available in Australia. ISPs can filter their customers’ connections without having to install expensive equipment within their own networks.</p>
<p>Peter Mancer, founder and managing director of Watchdog International Ltd explained the benefits of HWS: “Traditional hosted filtering uses proxy servers to filter all ISP traffic, travelling both ways through the cloud. That requires big pipes.</p>
<p>“Hosted Watchdog Services, based on our tunnelling solution, filters only the outgoing requests, which amounts to only a small amount of traffic. It is a much cheaper solution and one which doesn’t impact on speed,” Mancer said.</p>
<p>About 750 of the nearly 800 ISPs in Australia are small to medium providers and Watchdog’s externally hosted solutions will allow them to operate with the highest levels of customer service offerings.</p>
<p>While the larger providers tend to implement Watchdog’s tailored and customer managed solutions, Watchdog’s Hosted Service enables the smaller operators to quickly and easily implement high level systems without costly equipment installations or system re-engineering.</p>
<p>The two-tiered announcement by Stephen Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, will mandate the filtering of Refused Classification (RC) content, after laws are passed next year. And, government funding will be made available for ISPs to implement systems which offer an additional, optional level of ‘family-safe’ filtering to their customers.</p>
<p>Watchdog’s proven services have been sold into NZ, UK and Europe, and the company supplied filtering systems to three of the nine ISPs involved in the recent Australia government filtering trials at the Enex Test Laboratory. The Enex report found the filtering did not result in any noticeable drain on Internet speed.</p>
<p>“Early adopters of systems to cater for the upcoming regulation change will benefit from a market perception of being good corporate citizens,” Mancer said.</p>
<p>“This is also a unique opportunity because no other government in the world has provided financial incentives to ISPs to implement a service which can be so readily sold on to customers.</p>
<p>“We envisage that customers will be willing to pay an additional $5 per month on top of their broadband services to have that higher level of filtering,” Mancer said</p>
<p>“ISPs which register now for the grant opportunities will have a greater chance of picking up the estimated 10-20% of the marketplace which wants access to family-safe filtered Internet services to remove the thousands of inappropriate sites which are added to the Web every day.</p>
<p>“Watchdog’s experience in other markets is that ISPs which chose to offer family-safe Internet services can attract additional business, have reduced customer churn, and create positive customer impressions,” Mancer said.</p>
<p>The details of the grants are yet to be released but he added that the government is to be congratulated on its determination to enable Australia’s ISPs to provide the highest levels of protection for their customers.</p>
<p>All ISPs can benefit from the family-safe filtering offer but they must register online with the Department of Communications to be eligible for the grant and to participate in the department’s ongoing consultation with the industry.</p>
<p>About Watchdog International Ltd.</p>
<p>Since 1999, New Zealand headquartered Watchdog has built a global business specialising in Internet filtering and connectivity services to the ISP market, families, the education sector, corporations and not-for-profit organisations.</p>
<p>Its technologies achieve ‘general’ filtering of inappropriate or counter-productive material and the blocking of ‘illegal material’ such as child sexual abuse imagery. These filtering technologies can be implemented as in-house solutions or accessed as an externally hosted service.</p>
<p>Watchdog is the distributor and integrator for the leading filtering technology suppliers in the Asia Pacific region including Optenet, NetClean and M86 Security.</p>
<p>For further information please contact:</p>
<p>Peter Mancer Watchdog International 1800 130 058
Shuna Boyd BoydPR 02 9418 8100</p>

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