In home internet access is no longer a luxury; in this age of 24-hour news cycles, constant communication, information overload and ever-changing events, internet availability in the home has become a near necessity. Having internet access at home helps kids keep up with school projects, homework, and most importantly, friends. However, with the good comes the bad, including malicious websites, cyber-stalkers and child predators taking advantage of the anonymity aspect of the online world. For parents, trying to keep up with popular internet trends and websites while monitoring what their children are accessing can be a task and a half. However, there is a solution: internet filtering. Here are a few of the best user-friendly internet filtering options to help parents keep their children safe.
Most children do not go looking for inappropriate or dangerous material on the internet; it presents itself to them through pop-ups. Pop-ups are triggered by changing websites or opening certain harmless websites and serve as “invitations” to visit a new website. Sometimes when people click the “cancel” or “close” button, rather than close the pop-up, they are sent to the site anyway. Luckily for parents it is easy to remedy this problem. Many internet browsers have an option to block pop-ups. This way, when a pop-up tries to appear, a notice will appear and the viewer can choose to allow the pop-up or ignore it. This is a great way to help children avoid the onslaught of questionable sites.
Net Nanny, a super user-friendly program, can be purchased and downloaded instantly for around $40 to help parents filter the internet for their family. The Net Nanny performs basic filtering actions until and unless a parent selects their preferred filtering options under Administration Tools. Parents are also able to pick different internet usage reports they would like to receive via e-mail. This software is an excellent tool for parents looking for help filtering the internet in their home.
CYBERsitter, software that will help parents with their internet filtering endeavors, is available online for instant download for $39.95, making it simple for even the least tech savvy of parents. CYBERsitter can monitor instant messaging programs, emails and other communication methods. It has customizable content filters so parents can override the default lists if they so choose and the filters can block content by keyword or website; parents can also select content reports they would like to have e-mailed to them daily. One great aspect of CYBERsitter is that it is very difficult, if not impossible, for children to hack. In other words, kids won’t be able to go in and change the settings.
Internet filtering programs are great tool for parents to use to help them keep their kids safe on the internet. While internet filtering will keep children safe everywhere, it certainly makes a parent’s job, when children are online, much easier. There are many internet filtering programs out there from which a parent might choose; from the most complex to the simple and easy-to-use; parents can also find online professional and parent reviews to help them choose the program which will suit them best.