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Internet content filtering uses software programs, available since the mid-1990s, that filter or restrict the amount and/or type of content that users have access to when surfing the Internet. This entry briefly describes the growing usage of these programs and discusses the Children's Internet Protection Act, which requires use of filters.

Background

Early filters on the market relied largely on keyword blocking, now regarded as a simplistic and ineffective way to filter content. The early filters were designed for parents who wished to control the content their children could access on the Internet. Increased demand for the technology precipitated an improvement, as many filter products soon began blocking entire Web sites when a user encountered a key word or key phrase.

The expansion of the customer base to ...

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