A contrôle parental is a software product or tool that helps you monitor, filter and block content on a computer, mobile phone, tablet, game console or other Internet-enabled device. Parental controls are available from many different sources including operating system features, software products and apps, the internet service provider, extension tools within popular browsers and some routers and network hardware.
While there is no doubt that parental controls are an important support to help keep kids safe online they should not replace the need for parents to actively and openly talk with their children about responsible use of the Internet. While nothing is totally fool proof these controls do offer some good tools to help prevent children from being exposed to age inappropriate content or engaging in unsafe activities while online and also limit the amount of time they are on their devices and using their internet services.
What Are The Types of Parental Control?
The type of parental control you need will depend on your child’s age, maturity level and your personal preferences. There are a range of options from the basic controls built into the operating systems of Apple or Android devices to monitoring software products that can record and report on keystrokes, web and app usage plus even show where your child is physically located using geo-fencing technology. There are also a number of mobile phone carrier apps that offer parental controls such as Google’s Safety Center that offers an age appropriate mode that restricts some functions such as in-app purchases and social media access.
Some of the most useful parental controls for older children and teens are those that work on a content level by blocking or filtering websites, apps, images and videos to limit access to age inappropriate material such as pornography, violence, sexting, drug use and profanity. These types of parental controls are often called content filters and some examples include Apple’s Screen Time and Canopy. There are also a number of systems that work at the internet router level such as OpenDNS that can help to protect against malware and malicious websites and there are also usage controls that help manage the amount of time your child is spending on devices and apps and promote healthy device habits such as sleep schedules.
You can also set screen time limits that control how long your child is allowed to use their device or computer based on day of the week and time of day by clicking on the user account for which you wish to change the settings, then click Time Limits. A grid will then appear and you can drag your mouse over the boxes to create a weekly or daily time allowance that dictates how much they can log on during school days and weekends. It is recommended that you review these settings periodically as your child gets older and they may need to be adjusted. You can also use the search bar to restrict specific keywords or topics that you do want them to be able to find.