Raising kids in the modern age is tricky—they are growing up in a technologically advanced society and are learning from their peers how to get around the barriers that parents and teachers set up to prevent them from accessing the full extent of the internet. If free filters[June 2017 blog] aren’t going to cut it with your savvy child, you can purchase some fantastic premium parental controls to increase your child’s safety online.
1. Net Nanny
One of the highest-rated parental control softwares out there, Net Nanny starts at $39.99 a year for a single PC or Mac, $59.99 for five devices (PC, Mac, Android, and iOS), and $89.99 for ten devices. The award-winning software allows you to limit internet access to specific times of day or to set a maximum number of hours your kid can spend online. It also allows you to monitor social media like YouTube for threats, to customize eighteen individual categories of content filtering, to warn against or block out adult content, to mask profanity, and more.
Net Nanny includes real-time alerts and reports so you can stay on top of the issues your child runs into online—and if you have multiple kids using a single device, you can use an unlimited number of preset but customizable profiles so you know which of your children is running into problems.
2. Norton Family Premier
Norton has a wide variety of security options, from home to business, and their family package starts at $49.99. The software’s focus is to monitor your child’s online activities without prohibiting freedom. At a glance, you can keep abreast of the sites she visits, the videos she watches, and any questionable behavior she engages in, enabling you to start insightful, ongoing conversations with her and to help her build good habits.
Although it is not supported on Mac, it is available for Windows, Android, and iOS. With this single solution, you can easily protect your child’s private information, her online reputation, and the devices she uses.
3. Safe Eyes
Another high-rated software, Safe Eyes, begins at $49.95 a year for up to three computers, or $69.95 for the package with antivirus protection. Safe Eyes has 35 website-filtering categories to customize for maximum flexibility, and it includes program controls so you can block or monitor things like chatrooms, iTunes, and instant messengers. It even has a video-filtering feature so you can let your kid on YouTube and know he will only see the educational and innocent material available there without stumbling upon blacklisted content.
Of course, no filtering software would be complete without usage alerts, and Safe Eyes allows you to receive instant notifications via email, text, or phone call when your child tries to access inappropriate content. You can also choose whether you want daily or weekly email summaries of organized, easy-to-read information regarding your son’s or daughter’s online activities, such as common search terms, most-visited sites, and videos watched.
4. Kaspersky Safe Kids
If you’re looking for a cheaper option, Kaspersky is only $14.99 a year for all your PC, Mac, Android, and iOS devices. The software includes ways for you to schedule how much time your kid spends online, automatic notifications for you to see any suspicious activity he is engaged in, and summaries of what else he is up to on the web. In addition, you’ll get expert advice from psychologists to help you explain security issues to him.
For mobile Android devices, you can even monitor your child’s incoming and outgoing texts and calls. You can also receive alerts if he wanders out of GPS safe zones while carrying a device, and you will be able to see his real-time location on a map.