Setting parental controls on a Chromebook is very important to parents and educators with children using the internet. There is so much available on the internet that it can be scary to let children browse the internet unmonitored (most parental controls monitory internet browsing).Chromebooks are great for kids, but they do lack a little in the area of parental controls.
Chromebook Parental Control Software
There is no specific Chromebook parental control software, however, there are features within ChromeOS that allow users to set internet browsing restrictions and effectively function as parental controls on a Chromebook. Setting parental controls may be useful for children or school administrators. This guide explains how to set parental controls on a Chromebook so that children can safely browse the internet.
What are Chromebook Parental Controls?
Parental Controls can allow users to set limits on what their kids see on the internet. This can potentially protect children from damaging Internet content and protecting their personal safety. However, setting parental controls on a Chromebook is not merely enough to keep kids safe. It is very important to have a discussion on safe browsing topics with children to make sure they are safe. Research shows that learning responsible use of the Internet, at younger ages, helps children develop health browsing skills into adulthood.
Chromebook Parental Controls Protect Children
To help parents protect their children, Google is now providing integrated parental controls in ChromeOS. This allows children using Chromebooks to stay safe when browsing the internet. This feature works best on a Chromebook, where it allows you to lock down an entire user account. This means that children have no other way of accessing damaging content on the internet and are very limited in what they can do on a Chromebook. You can set parental controls on Chromebooks made by lenovo, ASUS, Acer, Dell, Samsung, Toshiba, and HP.
What can you do with Parental Controls on Chromebook?
There are many different types of parental controls. On Chromebook parents controls, for example,you set up a special account for your child where you have control over different actions in Chrome:
- Allow or block certain websites (Parents can pick what sites are OK to see)
- Review websites that have been visited (Parents can monitor Internet Browsing)
- Adjust their user settings (Set time limits and such)
- Turn off Guest mode (This forces children to use the account that has parental controls)
- Prevent them from creating new profiles (Again, ensures that monitoring the children works correctly).
The way you set Chromebook parental controls is through a process called setting up supervised users on a Chromebook. The next section explains how to setup a supervised user on a Chromebook.
Using Supervised Users on Chromebook for Parental Controls
Chrome calls its parental control solution “Supervised Users.” It works by allowing you to create separate Chrome user profiles for your kids and manage them from a single parent user account. From the parent user account, you can set parental controls that limit what the Chromebook can access on the computer.
If you can log in as the owner, you can setup a supervised user, which will give you the ability to do the following:
- Allow or block certain websites
- Review websites that have been visited
- Adjust their user settings
- Turn off “guest mode”
- Prevent them from creating new profiles
- By default, a supervised user can go to any website that they want, so you’ll have to decide if you want to block certain websites or limit access to only approved sites.
If you want more control than what supervised users offer, a third-party parental control add-on may be a better option. There are many paid and free parental controls software. A free option for Chromebooks and Chrome browsers is available from a company called BlockSi.
Setting up Supervised Users on a Chromebook
On a personal Chromebook it is very easy to setup Supervised Users and adjust the settings. A supervised user is a special type of Chrome profile (much like a normal Chrome Account) . A supervised user can browse the web, including signing into and using online web applications; however the supervised user performs all actions under the supervision and guidance of certain rules that are creased. Remember, if your account isn’t designated as the owner of your Chromebook, you’ll need to switch to the owner account in order to create supervised user accounts.
Steps to Create Supervised User
- If you’re signed in to your Chromebook, click the status area where your account picture appears, then click Sign out.
- On the main sign-in screen, click the menu > Add supervised user.
- Click the Create supervised user button.
- Click the account that will manage the supervised user.
- Enter the account password and click Next.
- Choose a name, password, and picture for the supervised user.
- To import an existing supervised user from another computer, click Import an existing supervised user.
- Click Next.
- You’ll see a message confirming your supervised user was created. Click Got it.
If you just bought a Chromebook don’t have any accounts on your Chromebook, you’ll need to add an account before you can create a supervised user. To view and manage the supervised users, go to your Supervised Users Dashboard. Also remember, if you’re on a Chromebook at work or school, you might not be able to add a supervised user. For more help, contact your administrator.
Blocking Websites on Chromebook as Parental Controls
The next steps show you how to block a website on a Chromebook:
- In the “Allow” drop-down, choose All of the web.
- Under “Blocked sites,” enter a website URL. For example: www.google.com.
- In the “Behavior” drop-down, choose a behavior.
- Block entire domain: the supervised user won’t see any site with www.google.com in the web address. This is the most restrictive option on blocking a website.
- Allow some subdomains: the supervised user can see specific web addresses owned b ywww.google.com that you approve. .
- Block only this address: the supervised user won’t see any site with www.google.com in the web address, but can see www.google.co.uk.
- Click OK.
You can use an asterisk to block or allow different versions of a web address.
Monitoring Supervised Users on Chromebook
Once the steps above are completed (you have created a supervised user account), your child should be able to log successfully into their user account. To double check that everything was completed right, you can verify it is a supervised account because of the “Supervised User Account” text in the user tray. Now you can manage the user account remotely check up on browsing activity.
The supervised user management tool is available at chrome.com/manage, and is entirely free to use. You may be prompted to log in to your Google Account prior to having access to the tool – please use your own account credentials (not the username and password you created for your children). You may select users from the left panel and permissions for each account are shown at the top right. User browsing activity may be viewed at the bottom, with requests for access to specific sites directly above it.
Using Chromebook Parental Controls for Safe Internet Browsing
For any younger children, Chromebooks should be set up with the Supervised User feature. In some cases, however, this might be too restrictive and not allow older children to fully utilize their Chromebooks for school worked. That is why Supervised user is intended for very young children who you want to give access to very few websites. It is not usable for a student who needs to do more complex tasks. If you want more control than what supervised users offer, a third-party parental control add-on may be a better option. These paid and free Chromebook parental controls may be another option for some people.