Worried your kids are engaging in nocturnal surfing sessions? Chatting to their friends on WhatsApp past bedtime? Engaging in some late-night Fortnite action using the Xbox in their bedroom? It’s impossible to have eyes everywhere as a parent, but you can thwart after-hours activity using the BT Access Controls. We’re going to show you how.
Use BT Access Controls to block access to devices
This guide will show you how to set up BT Access Controls using a first- generation BT Smart Hub. If you have an older BT Home Hub or one of the newer generations of BT Smart Hub, the menus might be slightly different, but the instructions should be roughly the same.
Time needed: 10 minutes
Set up Access Controls on a BT Smart Hub
- Open the BT Smart Hub Manager
You can open the BT Smart Hub or Home Hub managers by entering the following address into a web browser or by simply clicking our link, ideally on a computer: http://192.168.1.254.
- Enter My Devices
Click on the My Devices section of the Smart Hub manager home page and you should get a list of every device on your network. Some will be named (such as ‘Xbox’), some will simply be listed by their IP address, making them harder to identify. If the device’s icon has a D in it, it means the device is currently disconnected, but that doesn’t mean you can’t control it.
- Select the device you wish to control
Find the device you want to restrict access to from the list. It will normally be a console, smartphone or tablet, which are usually listed by name. Take care if you have multiple devices of the same brand, as it’s easy to inadvertently block your own phone! Once you’ve clicked on the device, the following screen should appear. Click Change Settings next to BT Access Controls.
- Enter your admin password
At this stage, you’ll be asked to enter your admin password. If you’ve not changed this, you should find it printed on a card mounted on the back of your router. If you’ve lost the password card, we provide further instructions on how to find your password here.
- Adjust the Access Controls
On the screen that appears after you’ve entered the password, flick the Access Controls slider to ON. You now (annoyingly) have to reselect your device from the Select Device box. Then decide which hours you want to block the device’s internet access between, and on which days. By default, it will be set to block internet access between 9pm and 7am on weekdays, but you might want to extend the curfew to weekends too. Make sure you click Save at the top of the screen to apply your new settings.
It’s worth bearing in mind that there are potential downsides to blocking access to devices overnight. For example, games consoles and phones often download and install big updates overnight, when the device is less likely to be in use. This will mean that you have to do these during hours when your kids would want to be using the device.
There’s also nothing you can do (via the router, at least) to prevent the kids using mobile data instead, and that could lead to even bigger bills if they run past their data cap with their midnight surfing sessions.
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