The best free parental control software should make it straightforward to keep tabs on your family’s access to the internet, giving you peace of mind that your children will stay safe online.
We’ve exhaustively tested several of the top parental control software suites and apps on the market in 2023, and have written a detailed guide to help you find the one that suits your needs, budget, and parenting style the best. So, we’ve listed one of the best alternative parental control tools so you can make the best choice for you and your family.
Top 10 Parental Control Software for 2023
The circle is a device that plugs into your router and gives you a companion app for your phone that provides a quick and easy setup to help you manage your family’s screen time, content, and sites across all their connected devices. The Circle app allows you to customize the content filtering and time limits for each member of your family.
Net Nanny is one of the oldest parental control software companies in existence, and for good reason; its products have always been simple to use and easy to set up, offering a wide range of parental controls.
What we like most about Net Nanny is its ability to block inappropriate content. Once you install the software on your kid’s device and log into your account, you can use a desktop browser to create a list of sites that you want to be blocked. You can also choose from categories including pornography, violence, gambling, hate speech, and more. If any harmful websites are accessed while Net Nanny is running on the child’s device, it will prevent them from accessing the site by displaying an error page.
Net Nanny filters, blocks, track locations and sends alerts to help keep your child safe.
Boomerang is available for Android and iOS devices, allowing parents to monitor their child’s device activity, choose which apps are available, set time limits around usage, and more.
It’s a great tool that helps parents stay connected to the digital lives of their kids without having to constantly be in the same room. Boomerang is free to download, but you’ll have to pay some amount for parental features
One of Boomerang’s best features is its premium plan allows multiple devices (you can monitor up to 20) on one account. That way you won’t need separate accounts for each kid or device!
Norton Family is a parental control software that gives parents peace of mind about their kids’ online activities. On top of monitoring and helping, parents manage screen time, it allows them to block inappropriate websites and apps, giving them the power to protect their kids from cyberbullying, explicit content, and other online dangers.
Norton Family also lets you know where your child is as long as they have their smartphone with them, allowing you to monitor their location remotely. Parents can access these features through desktop or mobile devices: the Norton Family app is available for both iOS and Android devices.
Kaspersky Safe Kids
Kaspersky Safe Kids (Free, Android, iOS) is a free app that lets you set time limits for apps and block access to adult content. Kaspersky is a Russian company with operations in the U.S., so there are some concerns about its use of user data; however, Kaspersky says it has no ties to the Russian government and has been vocal about its opposition to Russia-sponsored hacking.
If you’re interested in Kaspersky Safe Kids but want something more robust, the paid version manages screen time for each family member and offers location tracking; it also provides real-time alerts when your child attempts to visit inappropriate sites or overspends while making purchases on their device.
OpenDNS Family Shield
OpenDNS FamilyShield is a free service that does what you might expect from parental control software: blocks adult websites, malware, phishing sites, and more. It can also be used to set time limits on the internet, and generate reports of your children’s online activity. Plus this software can be used on Windows and Mac computers, plus iOS and Android mobile devices.
The main benefit of OpenDNS FamilyShield is its ease of use; once you’ve installed it, there’s nothing left to do but sit back and relax knowing your children are safe.
Qustodio is a feature-rich solution that offers a variety of protection parameters. It is a great option if you want to manage your kids’ screen time since there’s a timer feature that allows you to specify how much time your child spends on their device. It also lets you block certain websites and apps, so if particular areas of the internet are off-limits, this tool will help make sure those restrictions are enforced.
To set up Qustodio, you need to create a separate account for your child and download the app. Once it’s installed, you can customize your parental controls.
KidLogger is a basic, but powerful, parental control service that offers a free plan for each device. This software allows you to track your child’s phone use by recording keystrokes and keeping track of the apps and websites they visit. The app also lets you block inappropriate sites and set time limits for phone or computer use. KidLogger can also record what your child types on social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter. But the most important feature is KidLogger’s screen capturing tool, which takes screenshots of your kid’s activity every few minutes so you can monitor them when you aren’t around.
Are you looking for versatile and powerful software to protect your kids on the dark web? Mobicip is listed on “Kids Safe” and can deliver on its promises. It is compatible with a variety of operating systems, one of the reasons it’s one of our top picks. Features here include monitoring, filtering, child data, privacy, and locking.
Mobicip also allows you to block apps like Safari, Chrome, or any other browsers so that your child can only access the internet through Mobicip’s browser. The software also offers time limits for internet browsing as well as location tracking which lets you see where your child is using the phone and when they are using it.
The bark is a parental control phone monitoring app to help keep kids safer online. It comes with an advanced algorithm that uses the power of keywords on on-screen text, social media, web, or even emails on Android and iOS devices.
Your children do not have to hand over their passwords, and the app also monitors Gmail accounts for families that do not use Apple products.
The app uses advanced machine learning to detect potential safety concerns such as cyberbullying, sexting, and signs of depression or suicidal thoughts. It works on the most popular social media platforms (Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Snapchat) plus email accounts like AOL Mail and Yahoo Mail.
The list of parental control software for Android and iOS.
In addition to keeping kids safe online, these parental control software programs can also be used to keep an eye on how kids are doing in school or with their homework. Many of them can also come in handy for tracking other activities, like when your child is playing a game on his or her phone or tablet. As you’re deciding which parental control software program is best for you, you’ll need to take into account how often it’s used and how easy it is to use. You should also consider the features offered by each program, as well as the language that’s used for setting up the accounts.