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Set up and use Net Shield

Find out how to use Net Shield to control what websites you can access from your home or business. Learn how to set up allowed and blocked websites.

You can manage most Net Shield features by signing into MySpark.

  • Sign in to MySpark. Sign in now
  • From the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  • From here you can activate Net Shield, upgrade, turn it on or off, and much more

Activate Net Shield

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Select Basic or Premium
  3. Accept terms and conditions
  4. Select confirm

Note: If you're a Wireless Broadband customer you may need to restart your modem.

Upgrade Net Shield to Premium

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Accept terms and conditions
  3. Select Upgrade to Premium

Turn Net Shield on or off

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Select Net Shield on or Net Shield off
  3. Select Save

Apply filters

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Go to Filter and schedule
  3. Select the filter you want to apply from the dropdown menu
  4. Select Apply
  5. Select Save

Create a custom schedule

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Go to Filter and schedule
  3. Select the filter you want to apply from the dropdown
  4. Select apply
  5. Go to Customer scheduler
  6. Select the filter you want to apply at a specific time
  7. Select the hour block
  8. Repeat for all time blocks you need
  9. Select Save

Remove a custom customer schedule

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Go to Filter and schedule
  3. Go to Customer scheduler
  4. Select Clear all or Remove
  5. Select the hour blocks that you want to remove
  6. Select Save

Add a blocked or allowed website

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. Go to Block and allow website
  3. Follow the onscreen instructions
  4. Select Save

Cancel a service

  1. In MySpark, from the Products and services dropdown menu, select Net Shield
  2. From the menu, which looks likes three lines stacked on top of each other, select Cancel service
  3. Follow the onscreen instructions

Learn about SafeSearch

SafeSearch filters out what's likely to be offensive content on Google, YouTube and Bing. It redirects the search and limits the results to websites that don’t display offensive content.

Here are a few setting suggestions for different scenarios:

Internet users using the internet at different times

  • Set up a 24/7 filter of your choice, for example, low or medium
  • In the custom schedule, select None and select the hours you'll be on the internet
  • If you plan on using websites like mylotto.co.nz, you'll need to add this to the allow list. Net Shield will block it under the gambling category

When visitors connect their devices to your internet connection

  • Net Shield helps protect every device connected to the network using a single policy
  • Set up a custom filter and select the categories that you want access to
  • In the allow list, add websites that you'd still use when Net Shield is set up for allowed websites only

If there's a site you don’t want people to access, you can block this

  • You're a caregiver and look after kids in your home at certain times of the day
  • In the filter section, select NoneIn the calendar, select High for the times the kids are at your house

Frequently asked questions

While Net Shield can't cover 100% of all internet traffic, we're confident it's a step in the right direction. With education and monitoring, it should protect your family or staff from the majority of the content you want to restrict access to.

This is a common question as a lot of cyber security programs and apps need to be installed on a device. These can often be turned off or removed by knowledgeable users. Net Shield sits outside of your office environment. This means there's no risk of it being disabled without permission.

Your privacy is important to us. Net Shield isn't watching what you're doing. It also isn't providing any information to third parties. It performs the same function as a DNS service. It receives requests from you to direct internet traffic. It will respond to you with the website or special notification page.

Net Shield works with any device connected to your Spark broadband home network. This could be via WiFi or ethernet. This includes smartphones, laptops, computers, tablets and game consoles. If you're browsing with 3G or 4G, Net Shield won't protect you as you need to connect to your home or business network. As it works across all devices, you don’t have to change the settings on each one.

Note: Net Shield isn't a form of antivirus. We recommend you install dedicated antivirus software for each of your devices.

If you can still access a website you chose to block, it's likely the website's cached by the browser. There may have been an error and it's in the blocked list.

You can try:

  • Checking if filtering is on
  • Checking the website's URL is correct
  • Refreshing your browser
  • Restarting your modem
  • Checking if the website is on your allowed list

If you block a site that uses a secure connection (https), it stops Net Shield from showing the blocked page screen.

Your customised filter is a feature that's applied 24/7.

  • Websites are categorised by a third party
  • If you think a website should be blocked, check that the filter settings are correct, for example low or medium settings
  • Another reason could be that recent changes to settings haven't taken effect. These take a few minutes to start

You can choose a number of websites to block and allow. Business customers can block and allow 20 websites. Personal customers can block and allow 10 websites. These websites will override any other filters you've set up. Follow the onscreen instructions to block and allow

Spark allows spark.co.nz and other Spark-related websites, public service and government websites. Spark defines and manages this list.

If you've blocked websites and set up category filters, the following priorities apply:

  • Priority one: Websites you've blocked
  • Priority two: Websites you've allowed
  • Priority three: The website categories you chose

Here are some example scenarios that show how the priorities work:

  • Blocked website: twitter.com. If you haven't applied any category filters, twitter.com will continue to be blocked
  • Blocked website: youtube.com and the safe search category is on. Result: youtube.com will blacklist. Search engines like google.co.nz and bing.co.nz will continue to safe search
  • If you have twitter.com on both your blocked and allowed list twitter.com will be blocked

There are home and business categories. Learn about the website categories

Allowed sites only is a setting where you block most access to the internet. It will allow only Spark’s global list and your allowed website list. This feature works well for times where you want to have very limited access to the internet.

If you didn't get a notification, check your contact details and preferences. If your details are correct, try checking back later.

Net Shield will not impact your internet speed, but if your internet is slow, you can troubleshoot your connection through MySpark. Test my internet

This website might be blocked by one of Net Shield's categories. Learn about Net Shield's categories

If you can't connect to your work VPN, you'll need to upgrade to Premium and add the VPN server address into your allowed website list.

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