Web Filter – Keep the Garbage Out!
Before you install a web filter you MUST Do the following
Set up an online agreement with your kids. They need to know what they can and cannot do on the Internet.
Set up user accounts for your kids. If your kids are logged in as administrator they can easily turn off the web filter that is installed. Make your kids use a restricted user account. The link provides YouTube video links that explains how to do this for each type of computer.
Set up Parental controls. This is another add layer of controls.
Parent controls can manually restrict web sites. This is great for toddlers and little kids. However, a growing child needs to create projects and reports for school, he will inevitably want to search for information on the Internet. Now you won’t be able to manually control the allowed websites. Before you let them loose on the web, you should consider installing a web filter.
Even with a web filter and computer controls, you should still sit by your child and shoulder surf. You can teach them safe web browsing skills.
Free Web Filter Software
There are a free web filters available. I recommend the K-9 web protect. It is backed by the Blue Coat web filter database, which is also commonly used by businesses. This database is updated DAILY with the most recent list of inappropriate sites. It will block the inappropriate images and websites that may come from a google search.
Web Filter Software for Purchase
Software for Purchase – The NetNanny This software has a lot more monitoring tools on top of the basic web filter, including social media monitoring, IM & chat room monitoring, profanity masking, and time management software. This would be a good choice if you have a computer that does not have the built-in parental controls. Also the software allows for remote reporting. This means that if someone changes any settings or accesses inappropriate sites while you are gone, you get an e-mail with a detailed report of what was viewed, when, and for how long.
There aren’t that many web filters available that will FILTER within YouTube. Safe Eyes by McAffee DOES have video filtering. You should check it out!
Web Filter for Mobile
Every mobile device can access the Internet, so you need to apply a web filter to mobile devices as well. Look at this post on how to secure an Apple mobile device. An android device would follow the same concept #1Set up restrictions with a password #2 Disable the browser #3 Install a application that is a web filter and web browser.
Web Filter won’t stop YouTube & Google Images
Even if you have a web filter installed, if you ALLOW YouTube and Google through the web filter, your family can STILL be exposed to a lot of explict material. Look at these two posts regarding YouTube and Google Safe Search.
Web Browser for Kids
Another option is to install a free web browser that is built for kids. The KidZui K2 browser is stuffed with millions of websites, games, and videos which are all pre-screened and approved by an editorial staff, teachers and parents. Think of it like web browsing with training wheels.