PTA Directs ISPs to Block Over 400,000 Pornographic Websites

On Monday, Pakistan’s telecom regulator, PTA asked internet service providers to block access to almost 400,000 adult websites all over Pakistan. Sources acquainted with the progress confirmed this to The Express Tribune that access to sites portraying soot and pornographic content will be limited at the domain level.

PTA Directs ISPs to Block Over 400,000 Pornographic Websites

This step came after a recent order issued by the Supreme Court where the telecom sector’s regulatory body had been questioned to “take remedial steps to quantify the nefarious phenomenon of obscenity and pornography that has an imminent role to corrupt and vitiate the youth of Pakistan.”

PTA informed that it has decided to take preventive measures to block such websites at the domain level to limit propagation of pornographic material via the internet as it gave a list of 429,343 domains to the ISPs to be blocked on their relevant networks.

The SC order, dated January 12, 2016 had made it clear that information in every field of the world has become so extensive that any person can familiarize himself with the recent developments going on in the world.

It stated:

“But this information has to be qualified. It can’t be extended to include every nasty and nefarious phenomenon, which has the potential to corrupt and vitiate the youth. This aspect of the subject has to be thought over holistically so that the negative part of the information may not spoil our young generation.”

ISPs revealed that the list given by PTA was extensive and that they would face defies, especially of time, while trying to block the relevant material. Officials stated that blocking websites at the domain level was a huge and costly task, as it would need changes in their systems and special equipment to block such a great number of websites. On the other hand they informed that they had started work on the order since they were bound to stand by the law.

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