Homeschooling: Internet Accountability Resources

I am not a computer expert that understands all the in’s and out’s of internet accountability, controls and resources! I am a mom who knows that I need to protect my family from the evil that is so easily available on the internet. I didn’t want the blessing of homeschooling to turn into a curse of misuse of the internet, a pornography addition, and its evil influences.
Below are some internet accountability resources to help all of us protect our families.

Internet Accountability: Stop Accidental Exposure!

Did you know that according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, roughly 70% of children are exposed accidentally to pornography each year?

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. 

Internet Accountability: Children Are Curious

That’s a great quality! And we have taught them that when they have questions, they can look up the answers. BUT we want our children to be getting answers from us when it comes to their sexuality, God’s plan for purity before marriage, what is happening to their bodies and Biblical principles for taking care of their bodies.

WE are the ones that need to have those conversations with our children.

We are the ones that need to model modesty, follow guidelines for good healthy relationships and talk to our children about God’s best plan for the family.

Ideas from another mom about internet accountability with her family: “Lots of facets here. (self-control, parental monitoring, etc)
This is what works for us- having the computer in a public area, having good dialogue and expectations with my children, and  applying blocks so that your children can only access certain websites. Having software that allows you to see everywhere a child has been, even though they try to erase their history, is also a consideration.”
One mom I know has all the charging stations for phones and devices in her bedroom. Every device gets plugged in there for night-time accountability. Great idea!

CovenantEyes

Note: I am an affiliate of CovenantEyes because we have personally been pleased with their product. If you use the code HSCM you get 30 days free.

I have also appreciated CovenantEyes’ free resources such as the free download book Connected: How Strong Family Relationships Lead to Internet Safe Kids.

From the Covenant Ideas website: Our software periodically captures screenshots of your screen activity and stores them securely on your device.

Advanced artificial intelligence analyzes those screenshots, on your device, for explicit imagery.

The software rates the images, blurs them to protect your privacy, then prioritizes them based on content.

A report of concerning activity, circumvention attempts and other activity is sent to you and your Ally. CovenantEyes allows you to go to any site, but you are held accountable to a parent or mentor when a site is deemed suspicious.

QUOSTODIO Think Custodian! Quotodio provides powerful monitoring tools and parental controls for things like screen time, adult content and games. The free version allows you to try it out for one day before you enroll.  This program enables you to set rules and time schedules, block pornography and other unsuitable content. Depending on what package you select,  you can also get SMS monitoring, social media features and per-app controls.

Bark  Bark’s affordable, award-winning dashboard proactively monitors text messages, YouTube, emails, and 30+ different social networks for potential safety concerns, so busy parents can save time and gain peace of mind.

Get automatic alerts when Bark detects potential issues, along with expert recommendations from child psychologists for addressing them.
VXE NETWORKS  Keep your family and kids safe with parental controls that supervise and protect your childs’ online devices. Filter and block websites for inappropriate content. Choose from a number of categories to filter including Youtube, Safe Sites, Time Management, Ad Blocker and a Website Blocker with various filters.

OpenDNS FamilyShield  

FamilyShield is a free service from OpenDNS. Its parental control tools automatically block domains that OpenDNS has flagged under the headings “tasteless, proxy/anonymizer, sexuality, or pornography”.

One of the big pluses here is that while FamilyShield can run on PCs and mobile devices, you can also apply it to your network router and filter all the traffic that passes through it – it’s just a matter of changing the DNS server numbers in your control panel.

Internet Accountability: KidLogger

We’ve created a useful and free app to help you get to know, what your children are doing at computer or smartphone. KidLogger – is a parental control compatible with the most used OS in the world. Install the app “Parental Time Control” for Android, Windows or Mac and get all information about activity of PC, mobile or tablet of your kids.

KidLogger lets you know:

  • how long your Kid is working on the PC;
  • which apps were used; (Android, Windows, MAC)
  • which websites were visited;(Android, Windows, MAC)
  • with whom he or she communicated (phone, SMS, Skype, Facebook);(Android)
  • where was been;(AndroidiPhone)
  • what photos made; (Android)
  • and what wrote to friends(Android, Windows, MAC)

Nothing gets past KidLogger. This free parental control software not only tracks what your children type and which websites they visit – it also keeps a record of which programs they use and any screengrabs they take.

NETNANNY

With kids having more access to smartphones and technology at home and at school, Internet filtering software is only increasing in importance. With Net Nanny’s real-time content filter, parents now have visibility and control over their child’s online activity with easy-to-use parental controls.A whitelist is a list of websites with acceptable content, while a blacklist provides a list of websites that should be blocked due to adult or inappropriate content.

Many whitelists and blacklists available online quickly become obsolete, since there are countless new websites added to the Internet every day. But with Net Nanny’s advanced Internet filter, websites are filtered each time a page is loaded in real-time, so you can protect your family’s online activity instantly. Net Nanny® also allows parents to create a blacklist of sites you would not like kids to be able to visit.

PANTAHUB This article explains how to set up a comprehensive filtering system to work for the home network.  “Whereas most smart devices have some form of parental controls, it is unrealistic to try and configure each and every one via separate mechanisms. Having the filters at the home network level is the easiest way to achieve the wanted protection — and if afterwards you want to browse the open web, it is as easy as tapping on a button.”

A big thank you to Techradar! I used information from TECHRADAR as I did research into the best parental control software.

If you liked this article you might also like these other internet accountability resources from HomeschoolChristianMom.com:

Limiting Screen Time: How Do You limit Electronics With Your Children?

Youtube: Internet Filters, Protecting Our Children and Managing Electronics

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