Let’s be honest, the internet is a mixed blessing. While it has unquestionably made our lives more convenient, efficient, and interconnected, it’s no secret that it also carries its fair share of risks and drawbacks.
It’s important to remember that the internet is not a place to carelessly roam. It’s filled with scams, explicit content, and graphic media. While many of us are well aware of these risks, the young can sometimes come across content that isn’t suitable for them.
This is why a wise approach is for parents to limit the content their children can access for their safety and betterment. Typically, this includes blocking websites featuring explicit material, gambling, and other adult-focused content.
In this article, we’ll explore the various easy-to-follow methods to permanently block adult websites on your phone.
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Best Ways to Block Adult Websites on My Phone
It’s no surprise that certain websites are labeled “18+” for a reason. They can be harmful, particularly for younger users who might not fully understand their impact on mental health.
Here are some ways that work on Android and iOS alike, to ensure such sites are blocked for good:
1. Enabling Google Safe Browsing
While the exact steps may vary from browser to browser, the basic steps remain the same.
- Launch Chrome on your device.
- Click on the three vertical dots in the corner and tap on the settings option.
- Next, scroll down to “Privacy and Security.”
- Under the security tab, press the “Safe Browsing” option.
- Out of the three options that will appear, select “Enhanced protection” at the top.
For other browsers like Opera, you will also have the option to enable Safe Browsing. Despite the minor differences, the core steps remain the same.
2. Turn on SafeSearch
Apart from Safe Browsing, Google also offers an additional security feature called SafeSearch. Safe Search is a feature that applies specifically to the Google search engine when accessed through the Google app or a web browser.
When SafeSearch is enabled, it filters search results to exclude explicit or adult content from the search results. Moreover, it is designed to provide a safer search experience by blocking or filtering out content that may not be suitable for all users.
Here’s how to enable SafeSearch from your Google app:
- Open the Google app on your phone.
- Now, tap on your Profile icon located at the top right corner.
- Next, head to the settings options and choose SafeSearch.
- From here, select Filter or Blur depending on how much you want to hide. We suggest putting it on Filter as that will simply remove any inappropriate content from showing up in the search results.
3. Activate Store Restrictions
Even when websites are blocked, the apps in your phone’s native store remain accessible. Activating store restrictions is another way to prevent children from accessing adult-oriented apps.
For Google Play Store:
Android users can simply configure Google Play Store restrictions from within the app by following these steps:
- Launch the Google Play Store.
- Tap on your profile icon on the top left. This will open up a menu.
- Tap on Settings > Family > Parental Control.
- Toggle the Parental Control feature on and add a pin.
- Here you can set the maturity level of different apps and games. We recommend starting out with 12+ and only selecting 16+ if necessary.
For App Store:
Instead of changing settings in the App Store, iPhone users can easily adjust store restrictions from the phone’s settings by following these steps:
- Go to your iPhone Settings.
- Tap on Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions > Content Restrictions
- From here, select the “Apps” settings. You can also adjust other store content like music, movies, TV shows, etc.
- Once you are in, simply select the age limit of apps in your App Store. We suggest setting it at 12+ for teenagers.
4. Set Up OpenDNS On Your Phone
A DNS server is basically a phone book for the internet. It consists of IPs for websites available to the public. For instance, when a user types a website in their browser, the specific IP address for that site goes through the DNS server and matches the IP. If it’s a perfect match the user gets into the site.
OpenDNS works in a similar way. But what makes it better than a public DNS server is that it features content filtering. This means that you can simply block a website and the IP address for that site gets removed from the phonebook leaving you with no access.
Users can not only customize what websites, images, or media to filter out but also block specific keywords that might lead to adult content. Moreover, you can manually add or remove a website to your blacklist, giving you more control over what things your children can access.
Setting up OpenDNS is a great way to protect your family from mature content on the internet. Let’s have a closer look:
For Android Users
- Head over to your phone’s Wi-Fi settings. It should be one of the first options when you open the Settings app.
- Now, long press on the network you are connected to and change the IP settings from DHCP to Static.
- Once that’s done, change the IP addresses in the DNS 1 and DNS 2 fields to 184.108.40.206 and 220.127.116.11 respectively.
- Save your settings and you are good to go.
For iPhone Users
- Open Wi-Fi settings from your home screen. Tap and hold the Settings app icon.
- Find your internet network and tap on the blue info icon ⓘ next to it.
- Next, head to “Configure DNS.”
- Here, change the DNS to Manual and press “Add Server.” Type in the OpenDNS server address and you are all set.
It’s important to remember that OpenDNS offers both free and paid DNS plans with preconfigured settings to block adult content and customizable filtering.
5. Try A Parental Control App
Popular options such as Google Family Link, Norton Family Parental Control, etc. provide options like filtering mature content, screen monitoring, and time restrictions.
Although most paid parental control apps offer a ton of features, Google Family Link stands out in this as it provides users with a free and secure alternative to setting up parental controls.
Following is a step-by-step guide for setting up Google Family Link:
- Firstly, begin making a Gmail account for your child.
- When it asks for a parent’s email, enter your email and verify.
- Install Google Family Link on your child’s device.
- Open and sign in with the new email you just made for your child.
- Google will then walk you through the steps, including the installation of Google Family Link Manager
- Similarly, install the Google Family Link on your device as well. Google Family Link allows users to block certain apps and find the location of their child and other features.
- To restrict what types of websites your child can visit, click on the three dots and head to Parent Settings.
- Tap on “Filters on Google Chrome”, here you can block or whitelist websites as per your preference.
To prevent your child from changing the parental control settings that you put in place:
- Go to the Homepage and scroll down to the bottom.
- Find your child’s device and open it.
- Make your way to the “App Permissions”.
- Now click on any app and select “Only Parents” to ensure only you can change these settings.
How To Block Adult Websites On iPhones
Contrary to Android, iOS comes with a built-in content filter called Screen Time which allows iPhone users to restrict access to specific websites or other inappropriate media.
To enable content filtering, follow these steps:
- Go to the iPhone settings and select Screen Time.
- Toggle Screen Time On if it is turned off. Add a password If it’s your first time.
- Once that’s done, head to the “Content & Privacy Restrictions” settings.
- Now tap on Content Restrictions > Web Content
Head to Content Restrictions > Web Content
- Finally, select the “Limit Adult Websites” option
- Now adult websites won’t be accessible additionally, you can also manually allow or block a website.
The rapid growth of the internet poses security concerns for the young generation who do not yet understand its harmful effects. It is up to parents to step in and safeguard their children from such threats.
There are a number of ways you can block inappropriate websites, some are OS specific while others work on any phone. The best way to regulate your children is to use a parental control app, as it provides more control over your kid’s device.
By following the steps given above in the article and turning on safe browsing, you can filter out all inappropriate websites and media.
Adult content on YouTube can be disabled easily, simply go to Settings > General > Toggle on “Restricted Mode”
Adult websites can cause devastating harm to a developing brain ranging from addiction to depression. It is essential to block such websites for the well-being of the little ones.