The Philippines said on Monday it would require Internet service providers to install filters to block access to child pornography.
The move comes as the country cracks down on online child pornography, arresting at least 13 suspects earlier this year for allegedly offering online images of children being sexually abused.
To block access to child pornography Manila will finally implement a law passed in 2009 but which required years of public consultations on how to implement it, said Edgardo Cabarrios, regulation director of the National Telecommunications Commission.
“There were experts [at the consultations]who were one in saying this will help. It may not eradicate [Internet child pornography] completely but this will help,” he told Agence France-Presse.
Police say the Philippines is a key center of the fast-growing global industry that streams live images of children forced to commit sex acts for pedophiles abroad.
The law requires service providers to install filters blocking child pornography or risk heavy fines.
They will have till June to install the filters, said Cabarrios.
He acknowledged that it was almost impossible to block all child pornography but said the filters could keep out the majority.
“We all know that websites are easily created so [filtering them]is a moving target,” he added.
Child pornographers have taken advantage of the widespread poverty in the Philippines to recruit children to create pornography for pedophiles around the world, advocates and the police said.