Which Software Is For You?

The best way to figure out which parent-control software is the best one for you is to do your research. First, consider what you want from the software. Do you want to limit your children's access across the internet, or just limit certain categories such as pornography? Do you want remote access so that you can monitor what your children are accessing from afar? Do you want to be able to print out their emails and instant messages and spy on their interactions? These are all important questions and ones that you should explore as you shop for the right software. Here, we offer a discussion of some of the most well-known parent-control software programs.

Bsafe Online

This is a great comprehensive program that includes content filtering, application control, scheduling of set times for Internet access, activity reporting and other important features. It can log IM conversations and can filter them and limit the buddy list for possible IM communication.

iShield 2.0

This software is best for limiting pornographic images and for having a browser-independent Internet time scheduler. When a pornographic image is detected, it gets covered by a picture of a large shield with a dramatic yellow and black background. The newer version lets you replace that picture with a picture of your choice.

Kidswatch Parental Computer Control

This software includes real-time alerts so that you can monitor what your kids are doing from far away. It also has IM monitoring. Kidswatch Parental Computer Control takes remote monitoring very seriously. You can get a list of all programs that a particular user looked at, and how long they spent at each location. It will tell you what websites they visited and which of them were valid and which were blocked. This program is not as sophisticated as the Net Nanny, but it does offer some interesting and helpful features.

Net Nanny

Net Nanny uses fantastic technology, ensuring that most kids won't be able to figure out how to circumvent the system once it is in place. It has content filtering, IM monitoring and a time scheduler. They also have full remote management for parents to follow what is happening from a distant location. Net Nanny is one of the best programs on the market today, and it has received rave reviews by many parents.


This is one of the least effective programs out there and is probably only useful for very small children. It allows kids to go to predefined age-appropriate sites and run kid-safe searches. Unfortunately, that's about all that you can do with it.

These are a few of the many parent-control software programs on the market today. By doing your research, and figuring out which features are most important to you, you'll be able to make an educated decision about your software. Hopefully, this will allow you to purchase the software that is right for your family and your needs - and to keep everyone safe and protected in your home.


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Spyware has many ways of getting onto your computer, such as:

When you download programs - particularly freeware, or peer-to-peer sharing programs.

More covertly, spyware can install itself just by you visiting certain sites, by prompting you to download an application to see the site properly.

ActiveX controls. These pesky spyware makers will prompt you to install themselves while using your Internet browser