Parents: AVG Poll on Online Security & Why You Should Be Concerned…
- by Scott
AVG Technologies recently conducted an online poll conducted by Harris Poll regarding electronics usage in the home, and the results are startling. You can read the full press release here, but here are the highlights:
- Nearly 3 in 4 (72 percent) parents of children aged 3-17 that own their own connected device have proactively spoken to their children about the dangers of the internet
- Just over half (56 percent) know the password to their children’s connected device(s)
- Only 41 percent have installed a parental block on those devices
- Only half of parents of children aged 3-17 (51 percent) cite that they check their child’s activity at least weekly
- About one in five check their activity less than once a month or not at all (19 percent)
Parents, with all of the very real stories of luring of our children, of sex trafficking, or even just bad influences via the internet, why would so few do anything about it?!
The study has some good ideas regarding implementing some practices to help, but let me take the discussion a bit further and talk about web filtering at home. Many businesses, schools, and libraries utilize some sort of filtering, even if just for reduction of malware-related issues. But many also use to mitigate liability (or things unrelated to work) by filtering by keywords or categories related to porn, or social media, or violence. Heck, many also use for a very practical reason: saving bandwidth.
There are different solutions for this for home use:
- OpenDNS. They have three options that work great for home use. Can be set at the router level or individual devices. Downside: a tech-savvy user could (fairly easily) change the DNS settings on a device to bypass.
- Third-party software. Norton has some, as do other companies. I have no opinion, aside from saying it’s better than nothing, but I don’t like software solutions for this in general.
- Router that filters/reports. These are becoming more common, though some features in mainstream routers aren’t fully-featured. Highly recommend this sort of protection for most families, as set up is easy. Here’s a couple: Blocksi | Clean Router
- Web filtering/UTM (Unified Threat Management) device. These are devices that usually sit between your network and the internet connection, but can also be configured to act as your firewall/router as well. Much more complicated, and require a dedicated PC to use (but system requirements generally really low, so you can often use that 5-year old system sitting in the corner with some adjustments. This is what we use. Essentially, these are Linux-based systems that are tailored to this function, and all have free + paid features, though most users wouldn’t need premium features. Some options in this category:
- Untangle (what we use, and the least technical of the installs and management)
- Sophos UTM Home Edition (after having just attempted to replace our Untangle box over the weekend, I can say this solution is fantastic, but is MUCH more involved in setting up, and not nearly as easy to use as Untangle. And we’re back to Untangle, for what it’s worth.)
- Endian Community Edition. I have yet to look this one over, but is on my radar.
Interested in knowing, though, what YOU are using. Comment and help out other parents…
AVG Technologies recently conducted an online poll conducted by Harris Poll regarding electronics usage in the home, and the results are startling. You can read the full press release here, but here are the highlights: Good: Nearly 3 in 4 (72 percent) parents of children aged 3-17 that own their own connected device have proactively…