Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

How To Out-savvy Your Child

And Make Parental Controls ‘Stick’

One of the services I provide for clients, as a computer technician, is a category of tech commonly referred to as “Parental Controls”. These controls limit what the child can do on the computer – what kind of websites they can look at (no XXX, for example), what hours the Internet is available, etc.. (Yes. You can turn off the Internet after 10pm.)

These restrictions can be adjusted and modified to be appropriate for the child… loosened as the child matures, maybe. Windows comes with Parental Controls built in, or you can acquire special programs. Let’s face it, there’s a lot on the Internet children maybe shouldn’t see at their age (maybe.. ever).

In my years in business, I have been asked to enable (or install) parental controls exactly three times. When I – specifically – remind a parent of these controls, and – specifically – ask if they would like me to go ahead and turn some on.. you know, ’cause I am right there? You know what I hear? (I bet you do.)

No. Thanks. My kid is pretty smart. They’ll just find a way to turn them off.”

Sometimes I hear, “No. Thanks. My kid is pretty smart. WAY smarter than me when it comes to computers.They’ll just find a way around them.

It would be nice if I had a dollar for every time I heard that..

What percentage of parents think their 10 year old is savvier with computers than they are? Just shy of 99, I’ve come to believe.

A lot of time, I think, the parent just doesn’t want the hassle of having to stop what they’re doing and come and install each update, or new program for the child, and come and type their password so the kid can see that website. Seemingly, each and every website.. all day.. everyday.
But I digress.

I came across an article for parents: Typical Trickery of Teen Hackers

“Tech-savvy teens have figured out ways to get past parental controls, reset passwords, and install software and other activities frustrating to parents.

Fortunately, these situations are solvable. Here are some typical questions parents have about how teens are able to get around parental controls, and some practical advice on how to prevent it in the first place.”

This will tell you how to stay in control, and keep your restrictions in place. Because YOU are the parent. And if you don’t know.. maybe you ought to learn? Reading the article is a great first step.

To read my other parenting-and-tech articles, click here. Also, I have a Page you might want to look at: Safety, Kids, and the Internet. (It is in the upper right.)

Bonus: You have already seen the ads. “Black Friday” sales are everywhere. I want to remind you that this is the cyber-criminal’s favorite, and most active, time of year. It is the time to redouble your “paranoid common sense” and triple your vigilance for scams, e-mails links, making sure the payment portal is https://, etc..

Today’s free download(s): For parents.
* K9 Web Protection is free Internet filtering and control solution for the home. K9 puts YOU in control of the Internet so you can protect your kids.

As if being a parent isn’t hard enough…

The Internet has made your job a whole lot tougher. As soon as your child is old enough to get online, you have to safely guide him through a whole new world: the virtual one. How can you encourage your child to explore wonderful new places that stimulate creativity and learning while ensuring he or she doesn’t wander into dangerous territory?

Get FREE continuous protection against malware and inappropriate Web sites. Download K9 Web Protection now.

* Norton Online Family is a free service that has won recognition for excellence, and ease of use. (To see more awards, click here: Reviews & Awards.)

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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November 22, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Internet, kids and the Internet, PC, permissions, security, tech | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment