Parents: Web Content Filter for iOS?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Pharmscott, Dec 12, 2014.

  1. Pharmscott macrumors 6502a


    Dec 13, 2011
    Sacramento, CA
    I don't have kids but a friend at work is concerned that her 8 year old might stumble into porn or other unsuitable content when browsing the web on "Mommy's" phone. The reviews for Net Nanny iOS look terrible.

    Parents: please share your favorite apps and any tips or tricks you've found.
  2. IHelpId10t5 macrumors 6502

    Nov 28, 2014
    My tips are:

    1) Actually be a good parent and reasonably supervise your young kids when they are online.

    2) Talk to your kids and educate them about the real world. You can't watch them 24 hrs a day so they better have been warned about the evils of the world like pedophiles, online predators, and right-wing extremists (the most dangerous of all)!

    3) Smart (well educated) kids are curious but do NOT have delicate minds. Despite how much cussing they accidentally hear on youtube, or even if they get an accidental face-full naked flesh from a porn pop-up advertisement, they will not care one bit as long as you (the adult) don't make a big deal out of it.

    4) Be open, honest, and clear when communicating with them about the Internet and what general types of content they are allowed to view. And, more importantly, explain WHY they cannot chat with strangers or visit "adult" websites at 8 years old. Explain the real dangers and a well-grounded child will appreciate that you love them enough to explain things to them instead of just setting rules for no reason and saying "because I told you so."

    5) Look into OpenDNS, create an account, use their DNS server settings on your router and all devices that they use, and use your account settings to block the most dangerous categories like Malware, Phishing, Web Spam, Hate, Tasteless, and hard Porn.

    6) If you find yourself blocking more categories than those then understand that you will have removed the ability for your child to learn about the world including topics that you, as a prude, are uncomfortable with. Do your child a favor and allow them to use the incredible resource that the Web provides.
  3. I7guy, Dec 12, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2014

    I7guy macrumors P6


    Nov 30, 2013
    Gotta be in it to win it
    Without a parenting treatise, as the poster above suggested, opendns is a viable solution. In addition my routers have this capability. I would suggest turning on restrictions, on the iphone, so settings cannot be altered or bypassed.
  4. citivolus macrumors 6502a

    Sep 19, 2008
    Opendns or other router-based solution will only help when browsing via wifi. What about when the kids are using Mommy's phone at the checkout aisle in Target to keep Mommy sane and they accidentally tap on Mommy's browsing history?

    I don't know how good the built in filters of iOS are but at least I have them enabled on my daughter's iphone.
  5. Pharmscott thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 13, 2011
    Sacramento, CA
    Thanks for the posts so far. To be clear, I'm not seeking parenting advice (I'm not a parent). My friend asked about how to protect her kid from the internet so that's what I seek.
  6. PsyOpWarlord macrumors 6502


    Nov 11, 2010
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Best advise is to tell your friend to just not let their kids use her phone.

    Yes you can block the content from your home router, but as soon as they leave the house or if the phone switches to cellular data, all the content will be unblocked.

    Your friend can get a basic iPod touch/ipad etc for their kid to use and they can just block Safari and set other restrictions as they see fit on that device.

    She could set a restriction on her device to block safari, but that is a pain for her every time she would want to use it she would have to unset the restriction and then re-add it when she was done. Easier to just have a separate device for the kids, or if the cost is a factor just do not let the kids use the device.
  7. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    How will this work for a phone? OpenDNS is a great tool that I use to ensure my kids don't go to any sites, but for phones, that's not a viable answer AFAIK.


    That's probably not going to happen. I'm a father of twins and they constantly use my phone. Maybe that works for some but it doesn't work in my household. I don't have anything on there that would be raise any eyebrows so I'm not worried.
  8. geoff5093 macrumors 68020


    Sep 16, 2014
    Dover, NH
    It's not ideal, but you could setup a VPN on your home router and have your phone always tunnel through it, then the OpenDNS settings would apply.
  9. RedCoil macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2013
    This app might be worth looking into. Its primarily for blocking ads, but I believe it can be configured to filter out specific content.

    You can even set it up on one device, and add the proxy to a different one to remotely filter what the second device can access on the web.
  10. bransoj macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2013
    There are options within Restrictions for websites on iOS that do some generic restricting of what web sites can be can choose to allow all website, limit adult content or only allow a list of specific websites. Might not be perfect but its something.

    If you go to Settings > General > Restrictions (you may need to enable them at this point by entering and re-entering a pin code) then scroll down to the Allowed Content section. Among all sorts of settings in there is the Websites section.
  11. Pharmscott thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 13, 2011
    Sacramento, CA
    This is helpful. I looked through Safari settings but didn't think to check General-->Restrictions. Thanks much!
  12. mofunk macrumors 68020


    Aug 26, 2009
    You can disable Safari. Also tell your kid to only use the folder designed for them. Just put games inside a folder and they can only access that.

    Or. B don't let kids use a the iOS device. Read a book. Get some Hasbro games. Let them use their own mind. :)

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