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Here's how you can monitor your children’s online activities

If you prefer a no-nonsense software to block adult websites, the free Family Shield software from OpenDNS is recommended.

Updated: Nov 10, 2014, 09.26 AM IST
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If you prefer a no-nonsense software to block adult websites and manage Internet access across devices, the free Family Shield software from OpenDNS is recommended.
If you prefer a no-nonsense software to block adult websites and manage Internet access across devices, the free Family Shield software from OpenDNS is recommended.
Do you worry about your kids’ Internet involvement and the time they spend online? ET shows you how to keep things in check for the digital generation.

QUSTODIO

www.qustodio.com

Qustodio is parental control software for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android. It blocks dangerous content. You also have the option of hiding it on the device. It can be used to manage device time, monitor social network activity and report suspicious behaviour. It lets you manage your filtering settings from the cloud. The free version gives you unlimit ed access to manage multiple devices, and set rules and time limits on Internet access. Go with one of the premium plans for games/application con trols, location tracking, 30 days report of device and Internet usage, and a bunch of advanced controls.

If you want to use the software in an organisa tion, Qustodio has profess ional plans starting at as low as `590 a month. On the mobile device as well, the basic version of the app is free. It can monitor and block websites, allows you to set access time limits and monitor multiple users/devices. With the app’s premium version, you can track the device’s location and check who the user calls/texts the most. It lets you control the games/apps an Android device can play.

OPENDNS FAMILY SHIELD

www.opendns.com

If you prefer a no-nonsense software to block adult websites and manage Internet access across devices, the free Family Shield software from OpenDNS is recommended. It comes with a pre-configured list of sites to block, so you don’t have to spend time setting it up. You can install it on the router to which all the devices connect for Internet access and then choose a filtering level, or block an entire category of websites from being accessed.

In addition to blocking a website, you can make the Web browser show a customised message. The message can explain the reason for the site being blocked. This will help your children understand why they are being prevented from accessing certain Web content.

K9 WEB PROTECTION

www.k9webprotection.com

K9 is a free Web filtering software for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android devices. Designed by Blue Coat, it takes the guesswork out of blocking websites. Download K9 and install on each device you want to protect and it automatically blocks unwanted websites from over 70 different categories—pornography, gambling, drugs, violence, among others. It can also be used to block more websites and also set time restrictions on Internet usage. Since Blue Coat also builds commercial Web filtering software, there is a real-time categorisation of new adult and malicious websites and real-time malware and phishing protection—useful for anyone using the computer, including you.

As a parent, if you’re notified about a legitimate website that has been blocked, you can override the software using your password. On the mobile device, K9 offers a Web Protection Browser based on the Firefox kernel. It automatically runs a safe search, blocks objectionable content and filters malicious sites— phishing, spyware, malware, automatic downloads.

HANDY FILTER

www.handyfilter.com

This small, Windows-only utility is a Web filter software with an online dashboard. You can control multiple computers from one account, and do so remotely as well. You need to sign up for a free account. Some of the features available include website tracking, blocking website access using keywords, detailed reports on Web history/usage per user or computer, automatic blocking of unwanted websites, blocking Internet access at specific times and limiting download/upload speeds.



If you are looking for a stronger set of features and don’t mind spending money, these software options can be helpful:-

1. Norton Family www.onlinefamily.norton.com

2. Bitdefender Parental Control www.bitdefender.com

3. McAfee Family Protection www.mcafee.com

4. Net Nanny www.netnanny.com

5. CyberPatrol Parental Controls www.cyberpatrol.com



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