Due to the current circumstances, a number of our stores nationwide are temporarily closed. We’re also extending our store opening times in England over the Christmas period, so be sure to check our Store Locator for the details on your local Three store.

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Filtering Internet content

Internet browsing and social media

Our top tips to protect yourself online




Filtering Internet content

We've got filters you can apply for anyone under the age of 18. They've been developed in line with the content self-regulation code of practice that we worked with other UK networks to create, and are based on an independent framework produced by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC).

The BBFC classifies online adult content as anything that can be described as violent, gory, sexually explicit or drug-related in the same way that 18+ film and video content is classified. You can find out more about the classification of adult content on the BBFC site.

In support of the UK government's drive to improve internet safety, all new Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go services have our internet content filter switched on by default. As long as you're over 18, you can switch this filter off whenever you like by following the instructions on our accessing adult content page.

Kids should be able to get online and learn safely. Our adult filters are here to protect young people from content that's not meant for them, but they won't be a catch-all solution.

Even with mobile filters in place, kids might be exposed to adult content by:

  • Connecting to the internet over Wi-Fi (instead of our network)

  • Visiting encrypted sites

  • Getting online using another person's or a public device

  • Sharing content through emails, pictures and text messages


It's a great idea for parents and guardians to chat to their kids about internet safety. You might also find these tips helpful:

  • Think about where you let your child use the computer. You might want to agree with your child that they don't use their computer in their bedroom or other rooms where you can't see what they're doing online

  • Talk to your child about the different types of websites they might visit – which ones you think are safe and what they should and shouldn't share with other people online

  • Talk about online safety basics like not revealing personal details to people they only know online

  • Talk to them about being cautious when meeting people online. Explain that sometimes people aren't who they seem to be and encourage them to share any concerns with you straight away

  • Install software that protects against viruses, hackers and spyware and lets you to filter inappropriate content. Parental controls are available on some internet browsers, so take the time to learn how to use them

  • Encourage them to create strong passwords, change them frequently and never, ever share them


There are also some useful resources available to help with this in order to educate and protect young people whenever they're online.

UK charity the Internet Watch Foundation provides a comprehensive index of online sources of information aimed at helping you to protect your children and family from issues ranging from cyberbullying and grooming to online terrorism and hate crime. The index includes a list of charities and sites that provide advice and resources on internet safety. You can also check out Internet Matters website for more info.

If you think we're blocking a site when we shouldn't be, or you think something's not blocked when it should be, email us at content@three.co.uk and we'll get in touch within 3 working days.

Note: The team who monitor this inbox has no access to customer accounts and won't be able to turn your filter off. If you're having problems, call us or drop in to a Three store for help.





Internet browsing and social media

We want you to carry on sharing, tweeting, posting and Instagramming – so we’ve put together these top tips for staying safe and secure:

Browse safely


If a link’s suggested to you on a social media site, double-check the web address for spelling mistakes and to see where it’s taking you. Replica sites are on the rise so be vigilant if a friend decides to share one with you.

Sharing on social media


We want you to feel safe and secure when sharing content on social media. To help with this, we’ve put together these simple rules:

  1. Use privacy settings. Social networking sites allow you to control your own privacy settings, enabling you to limit who can see your personal information. Before using social media, it’s worth browsing these settings and tailoring them to suit your needs

  2. Learn how sites use your information. Social networks collect information about you. If you’re unsure whether your information is being shared with external companies, review the site’s privacy and cookie policies and consider personalising your privacy settings


When browsing online you should be careful of entering any information you consider private. When using the internet, follow these simple guidelines to protect your personal privacy:

  • Never disclose security details, such as your card PIN or banking password

  • Be wary of emails from people you don't recognise

  • Don't share information over chat services you don't recognise

  • Don't be rushed into entering private information


You can find out more tips on keeping your personal information private online by visiting https://takefive-stopfraud.org.uk

For more information, visit get safe online or out of your hands.

Note: these links will take you to external websites not managed by Three.co.uk and we can’t be held responsible for the content on them.





Our top tips to protect yourself online:

  • Use security software on your computer from a mainstream brand you can trust such as McAfee, Norton, AVG, Sophos and Bitdefender. These offer security software which provides protection against viruses, worms and other malicious programs

  • Use a firewall – this is a piece of software that creates a barrier between your computer and the internet to protect it from attacks by hackers and malicious programs. Windows computers come with a basic personal firewall that is active by default. If you wish, you can replace this with one supplied with an Internet security package

  • Keep software up to date – try and make sure you keep your computer software up to date so it's protected against new threats. Windows updates help keep your computer safe, so it's worth turning these on and setting them to automatically update to keep your computer’s protection up to date

  • Be careful with unexpected email attachments – if you’re not sure what an attachment is in an email or on a website, don’t open it. You can check with the sender if they intended to send it

  • Don’t download pirated software – pirated software doesn’t come from a trusted source and it’s often used to get hidden viruses onto your computer

  • Create a strong password – see our secure smartphones and tablets guidance for more advice on selecting one


You can find more great advice on protecting yourself online by visiting Get Safe Online (will take you to an external website)