What To Do When Parental Controls Don’t Seem To Be Doing The Job

Many times I get calls from worried parents, frustrated that despite enabling parental controls on their child’s line through the wireless carrier, the problems persist: installing and using forbidden apps, time limits skirted, and contact with others that were assumed blocked. It’s important to know what all is available to you for parental controls and how to best lock down all the child’s devices for their safety.

Q. I turned on Parental Controls through our wireless carrier and I’m finding that my son is still able to download apps that he’s not allowed to and even use the phone to contact people that we’ve forbidden. Do parental controls even work?

A. A common mistake I see when using parental controls is completing the job. In addition to turning on parental controls with the carrier and configuring them correctly, you should also turn on parental controls the child’s phone and tablet too. If you don’t, the child can easily turn on and off the carrier parental controls, and even turn on parental controls for the device itself, in essence, locking you out from making changes. The next layer of parental controls comes into play on your home network. Many routers have parental controls so you can configure even farther. This is an important step since many children are very adept at selecting wireless or cellular signal to skirt whatever restrictions are in place. I would suggest even if you have enabled parental controls, you check your child’s device and make sure the PIN that you think unlocks it actually does. I have seen kids show their parents that yes, the parental controls are in place, but then discover the kid themselves set it so they could undo whatever the parent has set up.

While no parental controls work 100%, you will do better to at least have them enabled on your carrier, your child’s devices, and your home network. Just as important as enabling them is configuring them properly. If you aren’t sure what all that entails, hire a professional to help you out. I know I am always relieved when I am able to help a parent put those safety measures in place. In addition, configured parental controls, I strongly suggest password audits for your minor child’s phones AND accounts. I know many people argue that children need to have a phone for safety reasons these days but there are still a lot of options that are not smartphones that will do the job.

Please follow and like us:
Facebook
Google+
Twitter
LinkedIn
By | 2018-04-16T10:41:56+00:00 February 12th, 2018|Categories: Home Networking|

About the Author:

I have been writing professionally since the 90s and I love consumer tech. What better opportunity to combine these two passions than right here? My special take on consumer tech is this: I've been a broke college student with an ailing computer, the mother of a bazillion children all with tech "needs" and on a shoestring budget and for more than a decade the owner of a small business. Noticing a theme? Good. My passion is making what you have work the way you need it to and finding cost-effective solutions in technology to make your life easier. More convenient. More effective. It's all about quality of life, my friend :) We all have the same 24 hours in a day. Let's make them count.
Facebook
Google+
Twitter
LinkedIn