Contracts with Kids discuss and set up rules for computer use.

Time Limiting limits time online.

Filtering & Blocking limits access to some sites, words, and/or images.

Block Outgoing Content prevents kids from revealing personal information online.

Browsers for Kids do not display inappropriate words or images.

Kid-Oriented Search Engines perform limited searches or screen search results.

Monitoring Tools alert adults to online activity without blocking access.

There are both pros and cons to keep in mind when using these types of tools.

Please Note: GetNetWise staff gathered this information from the companies that make these tools. We cannot guarantee the effectiveness of these products, nor do we endorse any products.

Other Information

How ISPs are Helping -- Many Internet and online service providers also offer safety solutions by selling or including these tools with their services and adopting "Acceptable Use Policies", or "Terms of Service Agreements".

Web Ratings Systems -- Many companies that produce Web sites voluntarily rate and label their sites, using a system knows as "PICS" (Platform for Internet Content Selection).

Internet Issues in the Community -- When children use the Internet in school or in a library, their experiences will be different than when they are at home. Libraries and schools may have different rules for Internet use than your family, because they must serve the needs of diverse children and families.

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Home / Kids' Safety / Tools for Families / Tools filtering crime

Tools for Families

Tools filtering crime

These tools are designed to prevent access to sites that advocate criminal activity such as gangs, illegal drug use, and often activity that is illegal for children (though may be legal for adults), such as sites promoting the use of alcohol or tobacco.

Most of these tools will prevent access to most material of this sort, however none are fool-proof. A tool that uses multiple filtering strategies will limit access to more sites, but it may also filter out educational content. For example, software using keyword blocking to block the word "gang" will block out anti-gang sites as well. There have been reports that some tools block informational sites that address the negative effects of illegal drug use. Also, because many alcohol and tobacco companies promote concerts and sporting events, keyword filtering of the terms "cigarette" or "Seagrams" may prevent access to other sites or material promoted by those companies.

We suggest you check our tool search engine to see if the company publishes its criteria for filtering, its list of filtered sites, or the key words or phrases that it uses to filter or block material. You may also want to visit the company's Web site and seek out product reviews.

Remember: No filtering or blocking system is fool-proof. Parents will always need to remain involved in their child's online life. Kids will always need to know what their families' rules are and how to stay safe.

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