Our kids are fast becoming more internet savvy than their parents so internet safety is a big concern. I have four kids, 1 pc, and 2 laptops in our home. Looking over my kids shoulders isn’t always physically possible so I like having the extra added protection of a parental control and monitoring software.
I’m currently using Safe Eyes 5.0 and I’m quite pleased. It certainly does its job if not a little too well. The only downside so far is it can block valid sites when using optional keyword-based URL blocking.
Safe Eyes is web based protection for up to three computers (pc or mac) and supports 10 user profiles. I like that I can set up a user profile for each of my kids so I can see what each individual child is doing online. A few months ago I questioned my kids about who googled “where babies come from” and they all blamed one another. Now with Safe Eyes I would know exactly who googled what. Each child must use a unique password to log into the parental-control software before it will permit any Internet access and I can access all of their accounts on one Account Summary page. User usage reports can be viewed either on my PC or on the Safe Eyes server.
The web blocking feature is customized by me and I can individualize it for each user. I can block by category by blocking web sites that match any of 35 distinct categories. I can also block searches and URLs that contain profanity or specific keywords I’ve chosen. This feature unfortunately ended up blocking nearly every search and URL so I ended up setting up a list of sites that I allow and blacklisting those I deem inappropriate.
I can also set up time limits which has significantly decreased my yelling to get off the computer. Once the user’s time limit has reached Safe Eyes ends access to the internet and ensures that the user cannot regain access.
Safe Eyes also offers instant message and chat security. Safe Eyes records and saves IM conversations so that parents can review them at a later time. My kids are blocked from all IM and chat sites so I have not used this feature but I will once my kids are old enough to use chat and IM sites.
I really like the alert feature which notifies me by email, text message, or telephone any time someone tries to access a blocked site or gives personal information online. With this feature I can find out immediately about their activity since I usually only view the user usage reports once a week.
Safe Eyes has really given me some peace of mind that along with talking to my kids about internet safety I’m doing all I can to keep them safe online. Safe Eyes has ended up being a very user friendly software after some initial tweaking of settings . Safe Eyes can be purchased from the manufacturer’s website for $49.95.~Kristie
Lipstick to Crayons did not receive any compensation for this review other than the use of the software.
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