How to find Parental Controls for Smartphones.

 

 

Creative commons picture – by Enricod – http://www.flickr.com/photos/enricod/6989554817/

October marks the ninth annual National Cybersecurity Awareness Month sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, so I assumed there would be a few interesting posts about raising awareness about cyber security.

However – Today I read in the Telegraph, that parents are worried that children can get porn on their mobile phones….

While of course I do want our children to be able to use the internet and be safe – I feel this is slightly exaggerated or maybe parents just aren’t informed and unaware.

When they say mobile phone of course, they actually mean Smartphone – a smartphone is a mobile phone that is built on a mobile operating systems allowing internet connectivity.

I don’t really want to debate about why on earth these parents would they buy a child a smartphone when maybe the kids isn’t responsible or savvy enough not to click things that lead to adult sites, but porn is all over the internet, we know this. If they just had a normal feature phone that just took calls – then there wouldn’t be this problem at all.

If you really want your child to have a smartphone

First things first –  its your responsibility to speak to children about the dangers of being online if its on a smartphone or on a computer, children need to know not only what’s out there but the online etiquette.  Maybe too strong a word for children, but you’ve seen what they put on facebook – pouting pictures with their tops hanging off and foul language, talking about their next beer/girlfriend/snog.  No, not all of them are like that but you know what I am talking about.  Children need to be reminded that having a mobile phone of any kind carries with it some responsibility.

Parental controls 

Many, (if not all by now) mobile networks can block adult content sites on your child’s phone, there’s a start – call your network provider speak them them about it.  No, this doesn’t work if they are in a wifi area but these applications might help.

Applications to help your child be more secure on a mobile phone.

Android – Google play has an extensive list of applications like these, on a search for Parental control applications.

Apple does a lot to help security

On the iPad and iPhone there are parental control options on itunes, where you can protect children from inappropriate content or stop video chats.  And there are parental controls iTunes to stop them assessing adult content.

iTunes has many applications listed under parental controls

  • Kaspersky
  • AVG Family Safety
  • K9 Web Protection
  • Mobicip Safe Browser
  • Timelock
  • Netgear Genie
  • Bsecure
  • Parental Control by MountainDev
  • Kids-safe youtube
  • X3watch
Security Applications for Blackberry world …..

And the lists go on and on, I’ve not tested all of the applications obviously so I don’t know how good they are but I wanted to show you, that you do have options, apart from saying…. No, you are too young for your own smartphone!

One last word – remember also that many applications on smartphones you can play with anyone, they don’t even have to be a friend or someone in your phonebook and you can also chat with these people on the games.  So remember that when setting up permissions and controls.

Be safe and be aware.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did Anonymous turn Facebook into a PORN site?

We saw a while back a video apparently posted by Anonymous on Youtube that boasted that they were going to hack Facebook to protest about Facebook’s lack of privacy.

Anonymous Facebook November 5 attack : youtube video message : hack

One comment made was that deleting your Facebook account is impossible – even if you delete your facebook account all of your information is recoverable at anytime –  they explained in the video that they are taking action against Facebook on November 5th 2011

Tweets on Twitter later came from people evidently linked to anonymous saying that this was not true. Other reports said that the videos were fake.

On the 5th of November we checked Facebook wondering what we would see and Facebook seemed the same, everything was still there, nothing unusual.

Anonymous #Operation ”Fawkes Virus” Released on Facebook.

We then saw another video on the 10th of November which explained about #Operation “Fawkes Virus” a worm that “they” said has been released on Facebook that sends malicious links and gains access to your account.

Well… over the past few days it seems that Facebook has been hacked or users accounts have been hacked and are posting out sexual, nude and explicit links from their accounts which are spreading like wild fire. Getting hacked on Facebook is nothing new see – Facebookers getting Hacked! How to prevent. However these images are apparently appalling and are appearing on many unsuspecting users accounts.  This is evident from the tweets on twitter, with users complaining about hardcore porn or other highly offensive or violent images all over their timeline and understandably users are wondering if this is to do with the Anonymous attack.

That last one by Brian Swetz, was amusing though.

There are however many people saying that they have not seen any porn on their timeline, including me, although with the reports of how fast this is spreading I am guessing this one be the case for long.

I’m not sure if this is the work of Anonymous, (it doesn’t sound their style to me) – no-one knows yet, there has been nothing confirmed or denied about any of it, but there is one thing for sure, Facebook needs to sort this out, they need stop pretending everything is ok and sort out spam and privacy! They have had warnings from these silly viruses or worms in the past and if this continues they will be no better than Myspace in the days when it was just full of porn and spam, and look what happened to them.  Facebook don’t have a monopoly.

Again, all I can say is don’t click any sex, porn, violent or explicit links on Facebook. If you see anything on your Facebook wall or someone elses first announce what has happened then take these steps

If your Facebook has been hacked or you think it may have been compromised..

  • Change your password immediately
  • Check your apps settings to see if any apps have been authorised to interact with your account that you don’t know about.
  • Scan your computer for viruses – better to be safe than sorry.

Hope this helps !