In a digital world where anybody can access any information they want, parents need seriously consider what content they want their kids to be exposed to online. If not to supervise them, parents risk losing control over what their kids are up to online and the type of content they consume.
Fortunately, Web hosts and software companies provide parents with the tools to protect their kids online. Follow the article to know how to block websites in Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox and with the help of other tools.
Parental reasons to monitor kid`s online activities
Here is the list of most common reasons parents choose to monitor their kids` online activities.
- Adult Content
The main reason parents use monitoring devices is a tremendous amount of pornography that can be easily accessed by kids even if they are not looking for it. The statistics show that:
- 62 % of girls and 93 % of boys come across the online pornography before they turn 18.
- 25 % of kids stumble upon adult content when they even don’t look for it;
- 70 % of kids spend more than 30 minutes watching pornography online;
- 30 % of kids witnessed sexual violence online, while 25 % saw child pornography online.
- Moral Values and Religious reasons
Families with strong religious or moral beliefs may be concerned with the content which popups online. The most dangerous spots for kids are social media, advertisements, dating sites, private chatrooms and adult videos.
Unfiltered Internet access may lead to exposure to many online dangers. So, when it comes to Internet and children, it is better to keep eyes wide open and be involved in their digital life.
- Internet scams
The Net is teemed with unscrupulous sites and scammers who are just waiting for stealing private and financial information. Becoming a victim of fraud or other scams is something that even many adults fall for, but it won`t be as common amongst very young kids. So, parents need to keep their kids safe via parental controls or other available options.
- Online Predators
Sexual predators targeting young kids are an unfortunate reality of digital life. Every day child molesters groom and sexually target kids on the Net. Some of them even make an attempt to meet their targets in person.
It is a duty of every parent to reduce the risk of interaction with online predators by blocking dating sites and chat rooms where they usually lurk. So, it is essential to have a conversation about the potential dangers online and supervise their Internet usage.
For parents, there are several available options for blocking a website on kid`s device. Consider one of the below options that comply with your demands the most.
Blocking a website on a router
A Network router is a tool primarily aimed at sharing an Internet connection between multiple devices. But you might be surprised to know that it also can block unwanted websites. This method has at least three benefits:
– It is password protected;
– It prevents the block from being bypassed;
– It blocks a website on all devices
Blocking a site on the router (e.g., Facebook) can prevent your children from accessing it from the computer and any other device which is connected to your home Network.
To block a website on your router, follow the next steps:
– Connect to the Home Network router, opening a browser and visiting the default router address: http://192.168.1.1
– After connecting to the Home Network Router, block a needed website through one of the features below. In most cases, one of these options is available under the tab or button named “Security,” “Parental control,” or “Firewall.”
Note! The setup for every router is different, so you need find one of the settings mentioned above for your manufacturer of the router.
- URL Filter: Some routers have URL filter section, which allows blocking any needed site simply entering its URL.
- Parental Controls: Modern and advanced routers have a special section dedicated to parental controls, which allows not only to block a needed website but also to set time the Internet can be accessed.
- FireWall: If neither of the options mentioned above is accessible, the router should provide the filtering through the Firewall router settings.
Whereas blocking websites on the router is one of the best ways to protect kids from accessing undesired sites, they still can connect to an open network in the vicinity or use mobile data (e.g., 3g, 4g). For this reason, it is needed to consider the other more reliable ways to restrict access to unwanted sites.
Blocking a website in Windows
A website can be blocked on any Windows computer editing the host’s file. It is a local file stored on the computer that configures domain names or NetBIOS names into IP addresses.
How to locate and edit this file
1) Locate and open this file. This file can be in different locations, so the easiest way to open the Windows search and tape “Imhosts.sam” file.
Here is the list of Windows versions and the location of the “imhosts” file for users who are manually looking to locate this file.
Microsoft Windows XP, Vista, 7, and 8:
Microsoft Windows 2000:
Microsoft Windows 98 and ME:
2) Once the file is located, double-click on the file and choose “Open with…” and if needed choose “Select the program from a list” and tap Ok.
3) In the list of programs used to open the file scroll down until you see the WorldPad or any other text editor you prefer and click Ok.
4) Once it is done, the imhosts.sam file should be opened;
5) Use WordPad or any other text editor to add or remove content from this file.
This method only blocks the website on one computer. Any other computer, tablet or smartphone connected to your Home Network still will be able to access the blocked site.
Blocking a website in a browser
Nowadays kid`s safety is a top priority not only for parents but for many product companies too. Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer also have added a slew in-built security features for protecting kids online.
Note! This method blocks websites only in one browser. Any other browser on computer, smartphone, and tablet connected to the Home Network still will be able to access the blocked site.
Blocking a website in Chrome
The default Chrome installation doesn`t have an opportunity to block unwanted sites, but you can download extensions for it. Follow the steps below to download it:
- Open the Chrome Web Store;
- Type Block Site Extensions and choose the ones that comply with your demands the most;
- Click Add to Chrome at the top right of the page;
- Click Add extension and confirm your download;
- Access Chrome Settings by clicking on the Customize and Control Google;
- Choose More tools and select Extensions;
- Enter the website you want to block on the Block Site Options page;
- Tap on the Add page button to block the chosen website;
Blocking a website in Firefox
Firefox has plenty of add-ons that allow parents to block sites in their kid`s browser. Bellow is the instruction how to download an extension to block websites in Firefox.
- Click on Tools and choose Add-ons.
- Go to the search bar in the top-right corner the Add-ons Manager page.
- Search for BlockSite;
- Press on Install button to start the add-on download;
- Restart Firefox to finish the installation;
- Open Tools, click Add-ons and choose the Extension tab;
- Click the Options button in the listing for BlockSite. The screen below should be shown;
- Click the Add button in the BlockSite Preferences;
- Enter the website URLs you wish to block;
- Click OK to confirm and continue browsing.
Blocking a website in Internet Explorer
If your device runs on Windows 7 or 8, all the restrictions can be done through Family Safety. For Windows 10, website blocking is available through the online Microsoft account, by managing accounts that are part of “Your Family.” Follow the steps bellows to block websites in Internet Explorer.
- Click Tools in the File menu and choose Internet Options;
- Click on the Content tab in the Internet options window;
- Enable Content Advisor heading and click OK;
- Click on the Approved Sites tab;
- Enter the URLs to block and then click Never;
- Click OK to confirm your actions and continue browsing;
Blocking a website using software
In a digital world, it is very important for parents to be sure their kids have a safe browsing experience and are well-protected from such dangers as cyberbullying, scamming, online predators and inappropriate content.
These days, there is a significant number of monitoring apps, providing parents with an opportunity to block unwanted websites and protect kids online and Kidgy is one of them.
Blocking a website with Kidgy
Kidgy is reliable and low-cost cyber nanny that allows parents to supervise their kids` smartphone activities, protecting them even when parents are not around. Kidgy opens the door to the kid`s digital world and provides parents with such features:
- Internet monitoring: Parents can view the list of websites their kids visit and block adult or dangerous ones. Besides, parents can restrict the Internet usage for sleep and school hours;
- App usage: Parents can view the list of installed apps and block inappropriate ones;
- GPS location: Parents can view their kid`s real-time location and route history to be sure they are not skipping classes or hanging out in the distant area of the city;
- Geo-fencing: Parents can set safe and dangerous areas and get immediate notifications when their kids enter or leave these zones;
- Text messages: Parents can read all sent, received and deleted text messages on their kid`s device, as well as view the detailed info about every text (sender/recipient, time stamps);
- Call logs: Parents can view all their kids incoming and outgoing calls, including time and date information;
- Daily Scheduler: Parents can educate their kids, giving them tasks remotely and following their progress;
- Punic button: Parents can get notifications from their kids with their precise GPS coordinates and react immediately if they are in danger or need immediate intervention.
As you see, the Internet is a scary tool and can pose a lot of dangers to underage kids. That`s why parents need to supervise and filter their kid`s Internet access to be sure they are not exposed to any violent, dangerous or destructive type of content surfing the Net. In this article we`ve offered several possible variants to block sites on kid`s device, choose the one which suits the most to your wants and needs.