As the smartphone is getting more accessible, teenagers (and even adults) are getting easy access to the web. And they browse all sorts of things — good, bad, and even adult content.
Studies have confirmed, positive correlation between children’s exposure to pornography and aggressive behavior. Websites don’t enforce strict rules to block such content for children. So, it all comes down to parents and their willingness to prevent it. Although you can’t stop them from using a smartphone, you can take certain measures to block adult content on their Android smartphone and tablet.
We don’t encourage spying on your children. That’s not cool. But, if your child is not old enough to have a mature conversation, then it’s better to block all the adult content on their phone.
Block Inappropriate Websites on Android
1. Enable Safe Search
Firstly, you need to take measures so that the kids do not accidentally discover adult content while they are browsing the web or even Google Play Store. Thankfully, Google has the option to setup up parental control on Android.
To do that, open the Play Store app, tap on the three lines on the top left corner. Next, tap on Settings and Parental Controls. Now you need to set a PIN to turn on parental control. Similarly, you can also enable safe search in the Google Chrome browser. This will block explicit images, videos, and websites from Google Search results.
2. Use OpenDNS to Block Porn
The best way to block inappropriate content is by using OpenDNS. It’s not just limited to adult websites, but you can set filters to block other inappropriate contents like criminal activities, violence videos, and general time-wasters, etc. Though do keep in mind, Open DNS settings don’t work, if the data saver is enabled.
By default, we use our ISP’s DNS Server. But if we replace it with OpenDNS servers, then every request has to pass through the OpenDNS server. And if it’s found inappropriate, then OpenDNS will block the request and thus your kid won’t be able to open the particular website.
To set OpenDNS as your default DNS server, go to Android Settings and then tap on “Network and Internet”. Next, tap on WiFi and tap on the gear icon beside your home Wi-Fi. On the next page, you will see an edit icon at the top-right corner, tap on it. Now, in order to set the DNS IP Address, we would need to change IP settings from DHCP to Static. Post that, you need to enter the IP Address and DNS 1, DNS 2 address as follows.
IP Address: 192.168.1.105 DNS 1: 126.96.36.199 DNS 2: 188.8.131.52
Advantages of using OpenDNS
- This service is maintained by a large organization that constantly keeps on updating the OpenDNS filter list. Moreover, you can create a free account in OpenDNS and choose your filter level from low to high.
- You can also add OpenDNS Server on your router and block adult content on every device connected to your WiFi.
- OpenDNS can be easily bypassed by using a VPN app. So if you think your child is smart enough to do that then make sure you block access to Google Play and your device settings, more on that later.
Another caveat is that the phone is not always connected to home WiFi. For instance, when your kids are out and about, they may use some other WiFi or access the Internet via mobile data. In such cases, OpenDNS is not useful.
3. Use BlockSite app
If OpenDNS doesn’t suit your need or you require a simple way to implement DNS blocking, then you should try BlockSite. It works on the same principle of using DNS Server to block Adult websites throughout. The app is quite intuitive and easy to use.
To get started simply download the app. Once done, you might have to restart your WiFi or phone to flush out old DNS. Next, open the app and move to the Adult Block tab and enable the block.
- Easy to set up with a dedicated app
- Works on both data and WiFi
- Compatible with every Android browser
- Works even with proxy apps and VPN
4. Funamo Accountability
Funamo Accountability is designed to block adult & other inappropriate content and does its job quite well. The app has a built-in browser that has a cloud-based filter. However, you need to pay $19 per month subscription to use this app. Thankfully, there is a 2-day free trial, to check if it meets your expectations.
- It syncs data with Funamo server and tracks your browsing activity from anywhere
- Filtration in Good
- Option to blocks other apps
- Only two days of the free trial
- Don’t block other browsers by default
Download Funamo Accountability (19$ with two days free trial)
5. Norton Family parental control
Like the name suggest it’s a parental control system that can monitor your child’s internet browsing history. You can also block sites based on 40+ filters like pornography, gambling, social networking, violence, etc. There is also an option to get a detailed report of your children’s internet activity straight to your mailbox.
6. PornAway (Root only)
PornAway is a modded version of the Adaway app (the app that blocks ads on your Android). However, PornAway is tailored to block adult sites instead of ads. Unlike the other apps in this list, PornAway blocks adult content through your entire Andriod. No matter which app or browser do you use, PornAway will block adult websites everywhere. Although, you’ll need a rooted Android device to use PornAway. Here is how it works.
- Make sure installation from unknown sources is allowed on your Android
- Download PornAway APK and install it
- Grant it ROOT access
- Tap on “Enable porn blocking”
Once the app updates your host file, you can go ahead and uninstalled PornAway or even unroot your Android. The blocking will still work. But, if you want to disable porn blocking in the future, then you’ll need to use the same app and as well as root access.
- Works with every app
- Blocks all kind of porn
- Require Root access
Cover is a new app, that helps you hide NSFW content from your phone. The app uses AI to automatically filters out downloaded content on your phone. You can hide images, GIFs, and videos in your gallery with this app. The app is centered around people who get themselves in embarrassing situations by not deleting explicit content and handing their phone to a friend who swipes after looking at the cute dog picture you’re trying to show them.
When you install the app for the first time, it scans your storage and extracts the NSFW content and hides it from the gallery. Once your gallery is cleaned, you can activate a service that constantly monitors and hides any NSFW content that you may “accidentally” download. The service constantly running in the background may affect your battery but you can customize this feature on the settings page.
Although Cover does a pretty good job of detecting NSFW content automatically, it misses out on a few barely NSFW content. But, you can still hide those images and videos by tapping the share button and selecting the Cover option.
- Automatically sweeps your gallery for any potential NSFW content
- Constantly monitors and hides NSFW content from the gallery
- Mutes saved videos automatically on the phone
- The filtering technique isn’t refined and doesn’t work for barely NSFW content
- The service running in the background consumes a lot of resources resulting in battery drain
Block Inappropriate Websites on Android
I would recommend OpenDNS for your home WiFi and BlockSite when you are using mobile data. However, these apps can be bypassed using proxy apps like Hola or by changing the settings. So make sure you block the installation of third-party apps.
If you are an adult and want to get rid of this habit, then check out this subreddit This is a great community to share your thoughts and get moral support.
Also Read: How to block porn on Windows