What’s the best search engine for kids, in your experience? -via Twitter Keeping kids safe online should be a huge priority for parents. When it comes to kid-safe search, there are actually a lot of good options out there. Since you didn’t specify what age range we’re talking about, I’ll cover a few options. Safe Search For Young Kids There are some great search engines that you can bookmark as your kids’ own versions of Google. Acting as independent search platforms, these have been designed to automatically filter out inappropriate content, and only pull up results that are relevant...Read More
Category: Internet Safety
Is there a safe kids’ browser that I can put on my iPad or phone for my son? Or do I have to just find a way to block sites on Safari somehow? Thanks! -Ellen K Ellen, we get the need for a safe kids browser for your devices! We also understand the perils of searching for “Elmo video” on YouTube. Let’s just say the results aren’t always Sesame Workshop approved. That’s why I love the idea of this new kid-safe browser that’s great for both iOS and Android devices. The Maxthon’s Kid-Safe Browser is what it sounds like:...Read More
With all these Facebook updates coming in rapid succession, including ones to my beloved Instagram app, it can be hard to keep up with all the changes. So when we heard about the new Graph Search announced just yesterday, we had our fingers crossed that it would be something cool and not require us to head straight for our privacy settings to shut everything down. Well, from what we can tell, this new feature does look pretty cool and we think you’ll like what Graph Search will let you do. However we’ve got a lot of thoughts about your...Read More
My pre-teen wants an iPad or Kindle Fire for Christmas. Are there good Internet filters available for these devices? -Karen Hi Karen, great question! Yes, with kids bogarting our tablets and quite a few getting one for the holiday, we think it’s super important that they are sufficiently protected while browsing. There are lots of great security options out there for tablets, which interestingly, a lot of parents don’t think about. Net Nanny, still probably the best recognized name in Internet protection, has an Android-based Net Nanny mobile app that will work on the Kindle Fire. After downloading the app,...Read More
This morning, our editor Liz Gumbinner talked to the TODAY Show about the pitfalls of SnapChat, the most popular app you’ve probably never heard of. But you should. Especially if you’re the parent of a teen. Also known as the “sexting app,” this popular app (more downloads than even Instagram!) allows the user–with an average age of 13-24–to send a photo with text or a drawing over it to a contact, then set the photo to self-destruct in 10 seconds or less. The problems? Well, the promise of photos with no evidence can easily lure kids into more risky...Read More
It was kind of fun to log onto Pinterest today and see a message about the new secret boards. In case you haven’t checked it out, we’ve got the scoop plus some fun ideas on what to do with yours. Because unfortunately, they’re not unlimited. One of the biggest issues with Pinterest (besides the search functionality) has been the inability to keep anything private. While certainly Pinterest would benefit from a total privacy option, they’re taking a baby step by allowing you to create 3 private boards that can only be seen by up to two other people. I...Read More
If you’ve heard rumors about the FBI shutting down internet access for certain PCs this coming Monday, we hate to say it, but it’s more than a rumor. But don’t worry – the chances are minimal and you can take a simple steps to find out if you’re one of the unlucky few. Evidently the FBI is pulling the plug on servers infected with the DNSChanger malware which connect to both personal and business computers. The FBI did their FBI cyber arse-kickin’ thang, and saved the day for the most part. But now as the final step, they’re taking...Read More
Well one thing is clear about the new changes on Facebook–none of it is clear! At least according to our community, who bombarded us with questions on our Facebook page and our Cool Mom Picks Twitter account his past week, at our request. In fact, there are so many questions, we can’t fit them all in one post. Here are the first 10, and stay tuned for more. But in the meanwhile, we’re doing our best to get you all the answers you’re looking for. Hope this helps. And if you have your own insights, feel free to share...Read More
Are your kids on Facebook yet? Mine is 8 years old, so I’m not yet at that worry stage. But I know that by the time he’s ready for it, he’ll also be dealing with so many other issues in his life that I’ll want to know about. (Kinda glad I have a few years before he is there!) I’m also glad I came across a site that really lets you see what’s happening on your kid’s account without having to hack his password. With the free web-based tool Minor Monitor, you log onto your child’s Facebook account through...Read More
I’m not quite ready to have all those internet safety for kids discussions. I’m already preparing myself for the moment when my oldest asks if he can set up a Facebook account. Granted, he doesn’t even know what Facebook is, and he’s in kindergarten, but I like to plan ahead. And part of the planning process, means being protected with the right software. There are a lot of software suites designed for parents like me who want to keep their computers as safe as possible for their kids. CYBERsitter is one of them and basically logs everything, blocks anything and...Read More
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