Feeds

New UK MVNO offers white list calling for kiddies' mobes

Data to follow in September

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

The UK has a new virtual operator, one specifically targeting parents who believe their children need a mobile phone before they're old enough to cope with the pressure of having one.

For three quid a month (plus call/text charges), Bemilo lets parents vet potential contacts, read every SMS and lock down the phone at night to prevent under-the-covers texting, and claims to be superior to alternatives by controlling this from the network side rather than relying on an device-installed application – and the firm will tell you all this in a surprisingly loud voice if you visit the launch site.

Such applications are already available. Vodafone (on whose infrastructure Bemilo is camping) has a free app which does much the same thing should one's spawn be sporting Android hardware. Vodafone Guardian will even send out an email alert should tech'ed up kids learn how to uninstall it, and will also restrict access to specific applications.

But that's just for Android, and even Norwegian alternative Bipper, which flirted with a SIM-based solution for a while, is only available on Android/iOS and BlackBerry these days, so what's the overprotective parent who can only afford a feature phone to do?

That's where Bemilo comes in, though it won't protect kiddies from the badness of the internets as that's a feature planned for September, and one which is unlikely to work once the home Wi-Fi is within range. But Bemilo does provide a web-based interface, where one can add children who might benefit one's own offspring in the future, and remove those coming from the wrong sort of family, as well as checking up on what's being texted and when calls are happening.

One can moan about parents ceding control of their children to computer systems, but things are getting increasingly difficult for parents and the idea (promoted by the ISPs) that on-PC filters are the solution is increasingly laughable as internet-connected devices in the home proliferate.

Bemilo controls SMS traffic, but one has to wonder how much of that has already shifted to social networks beyond its control, and all but the youngest child is going to want access to those services too. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.