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  1. #16
    New Lounger
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    Router-level filtering

    I don't have time to give a detailed overview right now, but sign up with OpenDNS. (it's free for basic functions)

    It will give you a better internet experience, and has parental control capability that can't be bypassed by simple computer hacks (assuming you have a router that you can control and secure).

    http://www.opendns.com/


    (just a happy user!)

    Ben~

  2. #17
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    Hi John

    When you first install Win XP and you dont assign an administrator password, the admin account is unprotected. Just remember that this is not the same account as the two you created with administrative rights. Boot into safe mode and logon as the administrator. If the account is unprtected you will not be asked for a password. Go to Control Panel and then User Accounts. Select the Create Password option and give the Administrator account a password that contains lower case letters + upper case letters + digits. This will lockout your hacker kid from the admin account. The same obviously applies to you and your wife's accounts as they have admin rights. Good luck

  3. #18
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    Try a BIOS Password

    It may seem harsh, but to at least prevent use without someone around to monitor the culprit. Try using a BIOS password.

  4. #19
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    Getting to hidden Administrator Account

    If you are at the graphical login screen, all you have to do is type in ctrl+alt+del twice and it gives you the textual login screen. After you have that all you do is type in the username: Administrator, and the appropriate password, then you are in as the Administrator with no safemode limitations. Once you are in this account you will want to do all of the other things mentioned, change password, insure the access levels of all of the other accounts are what you think they should be, etc.

    As an aside I would recommend, like some others before me, more stringent physical security. For example: taking the monitor cable off when you are away to limit alone access, setting a difficult BIOS password such that the computer will not boot unless you have already booted it, putting the computer in the family room or kitchen so that the screen is clearly visible from most of the room, etc.

    Remember, where security is concerned the simpler the system is, the more difficult it is to hack around it.

  5. #20
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    The best way to stop this sort of thing is to purchase a program such as "Net Nanny" and spend a bit of time getting to know and control it.
    I have listed a few things that you can do below but I would still suggest getting a program such as Net Nanny. Here is a review of some of these programs http://internet-filter-review.toptenreviews.com/

    A quick way to secure your administrator password is to load windows normally using your administrator account. Click on the START button and click on "Run".
    In the "Open" text field type "control userpasswords2" (omit the quotes) and then click "OK"
    Highlight the "Administrator" account and then click on "Reset Password"
    Type in the new password and repeat it. Click OK and finally click "OK" again to close the the user control window.
    With windows you can also use shifted numeric keys such as @ # & * in your passwords. A password length of 10 characters made up of Upper Lower Numeric and Shifted Numeric keys is a good minimum length to use for your passwords.

    As stated in a previous reply you should password your BIOS. and also set your BIOS so that the only boot disk is your hard drive.
    Being able to boot from USB Floppy Disk or CD / DVD will allow password re-setters (available freely on the Internet) to be used.

    One last think is to check your security programs (antivirus and Firewall) for exclusions listed which may be keyloggers.
    Keyloggers can be downloaded free on the Internet that record passwords etc for anyone who installs the program.
    To be sure you could run one of the many free online antivirus/malware scanners. Choose one from a well known vendor to be safe.

  6. #21
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    We have always had all our computers in a family area, usually close to the kitchen. There are always headphones if someone wants to play games when someone else wants quiet. Since we now have a couple of young software engineers in the family most of the "Net Nanny" type of software would have been a waste of time. We are nagged about "unsafe practices" now.

  7. #22
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    Trust your children instead! Think of your relationship in the future

    I have a feeling that most people commenting on this issue disregard how the relationship with their children will be in some years. Tough control and "spying" may very well lead to lack of trust - and that is probably not what you want.
    My advice would be to drop all kinds of control / supervision, and rather have a very open dialogue with your children on what they may find on the internet, what they are not supposed to do with computers, the dangers of making appointments with strangers etc. If you try to control them, they will most likely find some way around - or they will visit friends and use their computers. And preventing them (by using some program) from visiting certain internet sites will at the same time most certainly prevent them from finding useful information on the net for school work.
    As some have pointed out, it may be a good idea to put the computer in a very open place, accessible to everybody. But, as the use of wireless networks is being used by more and more people, and children have their own PCs, this advice will probably have limited value.
    Last edited by Dlira; 2011-06-02 at 10:24.

  8. #23
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    Another possibility, the kids are not so untrustworthy. So what if they want to explore their erotic side or some other aspect of their humanity, a computer can be used for that as well as anything else. If they like/need it they will pursue it no matter what safeguards are in place.

  9. #24
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    You can also lock down some of the browsing or at least shape some of the internet access by using OpenDNS as your DNS provider. You basically reset the DNS on your router to point to OpenDNS instead of your ISP. You can get pretty granular on the type of sites allowed. Works great for teenage sons ;>)

  10. #25
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    Reset your DNS in your router to point to OpenDNS. This will allow you to control what types of websites users can or cannot get to. Works great on teenage sons ;>)

  11. #26
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    Disable the "administrator" account and the "Guest" accounts. (Make sure you hhave a "administrator" account with another name.)

    Change the passwords on administrator accounts, and make sure that all other users are not administrators. In my house I am the only administrator, but have 3 different administrator accounts with difficult passwords that have never been shared, and several non admin accounts.

    Parental controls (Vista) is set to block downloads for all other "users" (except one). Unfortunately I have not found a way to selectively allow PDF and text and block all others, or some method of allowing selective downloads. This means that I have to log onto an account that allows downloads and supervise the downloads. My 27 year old daughter has a second account that allows downloads that she uses for PDF files.

    "UserTimeControl" from 1securitycenter.com to set time limits for all children and block changes to system files. This can be overridden with a separate password that I have shared only with my wife.

    I use OPENDNS as the DNS server for both the computer and the router.

    Autoplay is turned off for all removable devices.

    COMODO Internet Security

    ACER Vista Home 32 bit, 2GB memory.

    One dauaghter has lost computer privileges except for school work requirements due to posting family information that should not have been shared. She has refused to write up an agreement for computer use that we parents require before she is allowed to log on herself. The computer is in the living room behind the couch, the desk and side table create a walkway between the living room and dining room.
    Last edited by lelandhamilton; 2011-06-02 at 16:25.

  12. #27
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    Greetings John!

    I have a concern about why the Norton Internet Security was disabled. There is usually also Norton AntiVirus installed as part of that package. If this is the case in your situation, I would tend to suspect that she disabled the suite in order to install a Key Logger, which explains why she can possibly access your account to disable stuff.

    I would recommend installing Malwarebyte's AntiMalware app (free) to see if it can find and remove any such occurrence.

  13. #28
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    Admin password

    If you are using XP Home, one thing that most people are unaware of is that the password for Administrator is left blank by default when the first user is set up. Your child probably figured out how to get into Safe Mode, gave himself privileges or made the changes that he wanted, and then booted back into normal mode.

  14. #29
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    It should also be noted that every control described in earlier posts in this thread can be overcome. Even BIOS passwords to prevent CD/USB boot and Open DNS routing can be removed or overcome.

    Personally, I second what Dlira says: Talk to your children. Building walls around them simply pushes the problem underground (to a friends place, or onto a smartphone) and before you know it they are hiding potentially more serious stuff too.

    The bottom line is that if the child is suitably motivated then he/she will find a way.....and for me, that's where "jaw jaw, not war war" comes in. Back that up with the full transparency advocated by Bluenose1912 and you have something that works even for teenagers.(!)

    It's what we do with our children and it works: our middle daughter came to us last year almost in tears worried that she might be in trouble because she had seen something on an otherwise legitimate website that was beyond where our boundaries lay. She did not get into trouble, rather we praised her for her honesty and explained that it was not her fault that bad people posted bad stuff in a supposedly safe environment. It also gave us the opportunity to talk through some personal questions that she had bottled up. Everyone ended up a winner.
    Last edited by Tinto Tech; 2011-06-02 at 18:02. Reason: typo

  15. #30
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    I highly recommend http://opendns.org for filtering your whole network. It's best set up at the router (choose a strong password on your router!), and then it covers your wired network, and also any WiFi devices, such as iPod touch etc.

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