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The Online Mom CHOICE Award – OnlineFamily.Norton

Symantec recently announced that its OnlineFamily.Norton parental control software will remain a free download. That means a top-class product just got even better – and it makes OnlineFamily.Norton a worthy recipient of The Online Mom CHOICE Award for Internet safety.

With OnlineFamily.Norton, Symantec has developed a product that not only monitors and restricts computer time and Internet use, but also provides parents with a valuable insight into their kids' online behavior.

But it's not a case of parents crying "gotcha". There's no stealth mode to OnlineFamily.Norton. When activated, a dog's paw icon appears in the tool tray, providing an open reminder that the controls are functioning. With OnlineFamily.Norton, Symantec encourages parents to have a dialogue with their kids about good online habits, explaining why the controls are in place and allowing customization of the settings for homework or as kids get older.

Although OnlineFamily.Norton goes out of its way to make set up a family affair, the controls are robust and reliable. Web blocking and monitoring is particularly well-constructed, allowing parents to select from over 45 categories – everything from alcohol to pornography to violence. Alternatively, parents can specify their own choices, blocking certain sites or restricting access to just a few favorites.

Another welcome feature is social network monitoring, which can notify parents when an account is set up or an incorrect age is used to register.

OnlineFamily.Norton also monitors the sharing of personal information, such as social security #s, telephone numbers and e-mail addresses. It also allows parents to specify when and for how long computers can be used. Again, unlike other parental control options, there are no restrictions on how many times you can install the software, so you can cover as many computers as you need.

OnlineFamily.Norton is available for the PC or Mac (PCs must be running Window XP or later editions) and download takes just a few seconds.

With other parental control packages costing upwards of $60 per year, OnlineFamily.Norton provides a first-class, flexible solution at a truly unbeatable price – free!

OnlineFamily.Norton – recipient of The Online Mom 2010 CHOICE Award! 

Comment by Robyn's Online World, posted 3/13/2010, 2:03 PM:

We have been using OnlineFamily.Norton for about a year now. I would really recommend it to anyone. There are still a few quirks, but nothing that I've noticed is letting things get thru that I would prefer didn't. It's more with email notifications and such. If you need to install somethings or configure you may also have to temporarily disable, but other than that it is pretty easy and works well. We use this in conjunction with Open DNS.
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