May 6, 2019

Starbucks filters inappropriate content on company-owned Stores' wifi

For immediate release: May 6, 2019

Enough Is Enough® Applauds Starbucks For Filtering Inappropriate Content on its Company-Owned Stores’ WiFi

EIE Calls on Businesses, Colleges and Travel Industry to Follow Suit and Keep its Patrons Safe from Obscene and Illegal Content

Great Falls, Va. -- Enough Is Enough®® (EIE), the nation's pioneering Internet safety organization, today announced that the Starbucks Corporation has followed through on their November 2018 public commitment via to begin filtering their company-owned stores’ WiFi from pornography and child pornography in 2019. According to, there are nearly 8,500 company-owned stores throughout the U.S. 

Now, when a customer logs in to a Starbucks-owned location’s WiFi, the following message appears when a patron attempts to view inappropriate content: “Access to this site has been blocked.” Starbucks now joins others such as McDonald's, Chick-fil-A and Panera Bread in demonstrating their commitment to provide safe and secure WiFi resulting in a family friendly environment for all of their patrons.

“We are pleased that Starbucks is now filtering both its coffee and its public WiFi. This is a tremendous victory for children, families and patrons. Parents can now have peace of mind, knowing that when their kids go to Starbucks, they will have a safer WiFi experience,” said EIE President Donna Rice Hughes, who confirmed the giant coffee company is now filtering its WiFi in a recent phone call with a senior Starbucks executive. "We are hopeful that Starbucks’ demonstration of corporate responsibility and commitment to children and family safety will be a beacon to other businesses and institutions to follow suit.”

EIE continues to encourage other restaurant chains such as Wendy’s, entertainment venues, the travel industry, religious institutions and universities to join the Safe WiFiSM movement by filtering their public WiFi from pornography and child pornography. In 2018, EIE contacted the Notre Dame’s administration to heed the call of its students requesting they filter pornography from its campus WiFi. In response, the university’s president indicated Notre Dame would not be filtering, recommending instead students “adopt filters voluntarily.” 

According to Hughes, “By implementing a safe WiFi policy and effective filtering, businesses and institutions can better prevent the unintended consequences of unfiltered WiFi by blocking harmful and illegal content which in turn supports parents’ efforts to protect their kids online, deters sexual predators from illegal use of public WiFi, maintains a positive work and school environment, protects the company/school brand from negative publicity resulting from the misuse of WiFi and ensures corporate best practices.” 

EIE ‘s "National Safe WiFiSM" campaign" began in the fall of 2014, with nearly 50,000 petitions and 75 partner organizations encouraging McDonald's and Starbucks to lead Corporate America in voluntarily filtering their public WiFi. As a result, McDonald’s began filtering in nearly 14,000 stores in the U.S. in 2016, and Starbucks said they would begin exploring effective filtering in their company-owned stores. Both companies were early adopters in the U.K., filtering pornography and child sex abuse images on their WiFi networks.

Hughes concluded, “Companies, like Starbucks, McDonald’s and Chick-fil-A who filter WiFi from pornography and child pornography qualify to join the “Friendly WiFi” certification program -- the equivalent of the Good Housekeeping™ seal of approval in the digital age -- which allows them to advertise that their public WiFi is safe.