Family Internet Safety
Below are three possible solutions to help protect you and your family from harmful content. You need to protect not only your devices but the devices of other children and adults that visit your home. Please do something.
Open DNS is a free service with upgrade options for reporting and accountability. Open DNS works by changing the Domain Name Server IP address on your router to send all traffic through their servers which then filter content based upon your specifications. I have used OpenDNS for many years and have helped dozens of families use this tech. Pros: Very simple, free, better than admitting that you are doing nothing. Cons: only filters Wi-Fi and LAN connections at your home, easily defeated by those wanting to do so.Mobicip is a safe browser used by thousands of public school systems. It replaces the built-in browser on a mobile device and restricts content based upon a child’s year in school. It is free with upgrade options. If only Mobicip browsing is allowed on the device then it will filter all cell data content and Wi-Fi content from any network. To be functional parents need to be able to approve or “whitelist” sites through notifications as Mobicip can be very restrictive. Pros: a good free next step to be used in conjunction with OpenDNS, built specifically to filter content for minors, filters all internet content coming to the device. Cons: must use the Mobicip browser only, struggles with YouTube and social media.Circle Media requires the purchase of a Circle router ($129 which includes the hardware and 1 year subscription) which you add to your home network. The router then identifies every device (gaming console, TV, iPad, phone, laptop, computer, etc.) that hits your network. You then assign filtering levels by person/category. You will install The Circle App on all mobile devices and your home filtering settings will be applied on all devices no matter how they hit the internet. In addition, you can set off times, bed times, limit usage, and simply pause the internet in your entire home if necessary. Any time someone modifies settings the admin is notified. Pros: best all-around solution I have used, allows control of app usage as well, customer support is incredible. Cons: it takes time and effort to adjust the settings to get it dialed in, your kids will definitely hate it at first, cost.