How to Keep Kids Safe Online on the Internet-Setting Up Parental Controls in Windows

Computers and Kids
Computers and Kids | Source

How can we keep kids safe online?

There are a wide variety of parental control tools and software available that parents and teachers can use to filter websites and set time limits for internet usage. It’s important to teach kids at a young age about the pros and cons of the internet. If you have Windows Vista, parental controls are now available. If you don’t have Windows Vista, there are a wide variety of third party software titles available which offer parental controls.

This is part 1 of several hub pages explaining and review parental control tools. Below, I’ve explained how to activate and setup parental controls by using the Control Panel in Windows Vista.

Accessing the Control Panel
Accessing the Control Panel | Source

How to Setup New Accounts in Windows

In order to set parental controls for each child in your household, setup an account for each user. Even if your child or family member has his or her own computer, you'll still need to add a standard account in addition to the existing Administrator account. The Administrator account is where you will login and setup parental controls for the other user(s). In this example, we’ll setup a new account for a user named Alice. Setting up an account is only a few very simple steps. First, log in as the Administrator and go to the Control Panel (be default there should be at least one Admin account setup when you initially setup your computer).


1. From the Control Panel, select User Accounts and Family Safety for Windows Vista, or select User Accounts for Windows 7:

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2. From the User Accounts options, select Add or remove user accounts in Windows Vista, or Manage another account in Windows 7:

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3. From the accounts page, select Create a new account:

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4. Enter the name of the new user and select Create Account:

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Setting up the Parental Controls

Access Control Panel the same way (repeat steps 1 and 2 above).

  1. Start, Control Panel.
  2. From the Control Panel, select User Accounts and Family Safety for Windows Vista, or User Accounts for Windows 7.
  3. Next, for Windows Vista, from the Parental Controls options, select Set up parental controls for any user; or for Windows 7, from User Accounts, select Manage another account, then click Set up Parental Controls link at bottom under "Additional things you can do":

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4. Click to select the user:

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5. From the Parental Controls screen, click on the radio button to turn Parental Controls On:

Note: This image is from Windows Vista; Windows 7 is very similar except Web Filters no longer appear on the screen. Note: If you are using, Windows 7, web filtering was removed, but can be setup via Windows Live Family Safety.
Note: This image is from Windows Vista; Windows 7 is very similar except Web Filters no longer appear on the screen. Note: If you are using, Windows 7, web filtering was removed, but can be setup via Windows Live Family Safety. | Source

6. Next,click on Windows Vista Web Filter (Windows Vista only); for Windows 7, skip to Time Limits step below:

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7. This screen allows you to block websites based on a rating of High, Medium, None or Custom. By default, Medium is selected:

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You can also use the Edit Allow and block list to add additional websites you wish to blocks, or add sites to allow:

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The custom level allow you to block content based on categories. Like the Medium level, this level also uses content categories to filter websites, but allows you to filter more content categories:

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After setting the desired level for web filtering, click OK.

How to Set Time Limits:

Click on Time Limits to setup time restrictions.  Also on this screen, you can select View Activity Reports, to run reports and view internet usage.
Click on Time Limits to setup time restrictions. Also on this screen, you can select View Activity Reports, to run reports and view internet usage. | Source
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On the Parental Controls screen, you can also control online games, by rating, content or title. You can also allow or block specific computer programs from being run on the computer under this user log in.

When all finished, click OK.

Be sure to logoff as the Administrator and have your child login using his or her account.

First Time Login and Password

Once you setup additional users, upon booting, you will see a list of users to choose from. In the example above, we setup an account for “Alice”. If it is the first time “Alice” is logging in, there will not be a password setup. After selecting the new user, use the same steps above to access Control Panel.

  1. Start, Control Panel.
  2. From the Control Panel, select User Accounts and Family Safety.
  3. Select Create a password for your account (see below). You can also select Change your picture to setup (or let your child select) a special picture for their login.

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4. Next, enter a password for the new user and confirm the new password. Then type a password hint in the box provided:

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5. Select Create password to save the password.

Time limits on the computer are a great way to set limits for children. You can also grant additional computer time as a reward if they are good, earn an A at school, or for good behavior. The opposite can be done as a disciplinary tool. As a form of consequence, less computer can be given.

If your child needs the computer for homework, but you don’t want to grant access to the internet on a given day, you can block the internet using the “High” level which will prevent internet usage, but they will still be able to use the computer for typing, reports or other school work.

I hope you have found this hubpage helpful. Although not all inappropriate websites can be blocked, this is a good start in the right direction to keep our kids safe and monitor online usage.

© 2010 Amelia Griggs

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14 comments

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States

This hub is very well done with very understandable directions along with pictures. Good Job.


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 6 years ago Author

Thanks, Pamela. There's more to come. Glad you like. :-)

Regards,

Easy Learning


Lady_E profile image

Lady_E 6 years ago from London, UK

Thanks for this important step by step guide. (It could actually be a mini Ebook). Its a good idea to setup an account for each user. I don't have kids so thought, parents just did a blanket Cover.

Again, very useful guide.


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 6 years ago Author

Hi Lady_E,

Thanks for your comments. True, it could be a mini e-book. I've thought about that including using createspace.com or other websites, so if you have any recommendatins about which sites are best to use for publishing mini-books, let me know.

:-)

Regards,

Easylearningweb


Security News profile image

Security News 6 years ago from Riverside, CA.

Without knowledge, there is no power. If your household members know the pros and cons of internet use, they, too, will take precautionary measures towards safety for themselves and the whole family.


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 6 years ago Author

Good point, Security News! I hope this helps a lot of parents who may not be aware of parental control options.

Thanks for your comment.

Easylearningweb


kaylatz profile image

kaylatz 6 years ago from Los Angeles

This is really helpful and laid out very well! I look forward to more of your articles!


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 6 years ago Author

Thanks, kaylatz. Glad you found my hub helpful!

Regards,

Easylearningweb


Steve Penfold profile image

Steve Penfold 5 years ago from Sheffield

Thanks for this hub. I'll do it with my nephews. I think is really useful.

Regards,

Steve


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 5 years ago Author

Thanks for your comment, Steve. I'm glad you found it helpful. I recently upgraded to Windows 7, so I'll be adding notes (or possibly creating a new hub) to reflect any changes with the new operating system.

Regards,

Easylearningweb


jeyaramd profile image

jeyaramd 5 years ago from Mississauga, Ontario

A great way to set boundaries for children on the net is to set times for them to use the computer or laptop. Also, its best to have the computer in the living room so we can monitor their activity. And, if something inappropriate were to appear on the screen; we can be there to navigate them elsewhere and perhaps offer an explanation. Children have very curious minds and its great to answer their questions when they have them. Great advice on protecting children on the computer.


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 5 years ago Author

Well said, jeyaramd! I agree about the location of the computer. If it's closeby, parents can monitor kids' usage, and offer recommendations.

Thanks for visiting and glad you found the hub helpful!

Regards,

Easylearningweb


shahbaz Hussain 4 years ago

This is really helpful and laid out very well

But this option not in Window 7 and window 8


easylearningweb profile image

easylearningweb 4 years ago Author

Thanks for your comment, shahbaz Hussain. I now have Windows 7 so I will test our the functionality and update this hub for the newer version of Windows.

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