As part of my participation in this year’s TOS Crew, I have been given the opportunity to review PGSafeKey, an award-winning device that plugs into your computer that immediately creates a safer and more “kid friendly” online environment.
After teaching technology for 4 years at an elementary school, I was very curious to see how this product would protect our kids. I know when the time comes, I will be very apprehensive about my children being unsupervised on the Internet in this day and age. There is just so much scary stuff out there, and yet the Internet is the greatest technological innovation of our time! PG SafeKey offers “Protection for Your Children. Peace of Mind for You!”
What is it?
PG SafeKey is a patent-pending device that plugs into your child’s USB port. It was designed and endorsed by a team of professionals to give parents the tools they need to keep kids safe online.
What it Offers:
(taken from their website)
Control computer use by inserting or unplugging PG Key.
Decide the amount of time the computer can be used daily.
Eliminate unwanted results from innocent searches.
Block sites you decide are inappropriate.
Review all activity on the PC with a DVD-like interface.
Be informed via text message or e-mail of any flagged activity.
Chat and E-mail Logging
See both sides of chat and e-mail conversations.
Properly configure all users of the protected PC.
User Name and Password Logging
Keep track of user names and passwords.
Inappropriate Activity Evidence
Use video recording to show obvious or suspected inappropriate activity.
First off, I thought it was very easy to install. It literally took me just a few short minutes and I think just about anyone could do it. I went through the initial set up and entered the websites and words that I wanted it to “flag”. Since I don’t have any little people using the Internet yet, I just typed in some generic terms that would be inappropriate. The program claimed that it would email me if anyone tried to search for those things. It worked! I was happy to see several emails in my inbox immediately notifying me that someone had typed in those words and/or tried to get on those websites. The program also gives you the opportunity to be notified by phone which would be a huge benefit I think.
The other feature that I think is wonderful is the activity tracking. You can literally sit back and watch every website that someone went to, in a DVD like format. This would be HUGE in my opinion if you had an older child using the computer. No need to hover over their shoulder, just review the sites they went to. Genius!
Although I didn’t try the email and chat part, the program claims that you can “see both sides”. Wouldn’t you love to know what your children are emailing? Of course you can turn any feature on or off as you desire or as your child becomes more independent. I also loved the timer feature. Working parents might especially appreciate being able to monitor their children’s time on the computer.
There really aren’t many to speak of. The only thing that concerned me was that the program claims to block inappropriate content. I did a search of what I consider “inappropriate content” and several hits came up that I would never want my child to see. So I’m not sure if it was me, or if there is a glitch somewhere.
Also, I sort of wish there was some kind of way to tailor the program depending on your kids’ ages. What I consider inappropriate for a kindergartener is different than what I consider inappropriate for a highschooler. It seems that everyone is treated equally for that specific feature. You can however, block each users websites, but the general filtering seems to be the same for everyone.
I think this program is VERY worth it. In fact, for $49.99, I would definitely recommend it. It seems like a small price to pay to keep your kids safe online. If my kids were older I would definitely be using it on a daily basis. I think so many of the features are wonderful. Most of all, I think this program protects kids from a world that they might not yet be ready to dive into. Highly recommended!
Disclaimer: I was given this product free of charge in exchange for my honest opinion as part of the TOS Review Crew.