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Need A Starting Point For Learning Internet Child Safety


NegativeSpace
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I have a Dell laptop for my 10 year old nephew for christmas. He uses one of my home computers a lot, mostly to play flash games. I've never found any evidence that he is pointing the browser to anything that me or his parents wouldn't want him to see, but when he has his own computer that might change. I am looking for ideas on how to filter web content and for the best way to make the computer create reports on a schedule and also upon certain types of events. I'm not necessarily looking for any single software to do a comprehensive job because it seems that multiple purpose built software might be the best way to keep track of multiple content (internet browsing, facebooking, instant messaging, file sharing, etc).

I guess my goals are to block connections to any domain that serves non child friendly content (like porn, racism, gang propaganda, etc), and to keep track of any personal correspondence that he may have (instant messages, email, website membership, etc). I don't think it will be necessary for me to be able to watch a stream of his desktop, but I would like to have the option if I see a need.

One of the most important things to me is making sure that I track any instance of him transmitting personal or unique information, and to keep a record of all user names and passwords that he creates or has already created and is using on his own computer. Having that ability without needing to have physical access to the machine will do most of the work of making sure he isn't talking to anyone that we don't want him to talk to, child predators being the main one.

I'm thinking that a strong key logger might do most of the job, but I'm still looking for ideas.

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OpenDNS would be a good thing to try. Though you will need to block out bound UDP port 53 (assuming your router proxies DNS requests) from internal computers. However, this system could be defeated simply by having a DNS server on the out side of the LAN that doesn't run on port 53, or by having some nature of tunneling occur.

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OpenDNS would be a good thing to try. Though you will need to block out bound UDP port 53 (assuming your router proxies DNS requests) from internal computers. However, this system could be defeated simply by having a DNS server on the out side of the LAN that doesn't run on port 53, or by having some nature of tunneling occur.

oops, I guess I should have mentioned that he will only spend about maybe 1/3 of his time on his computer at my house. I actually already use OpenDNS here, but I'm not so much worried about his internet usage at my house because he knows that I have magical computer powers and I can see into my network like Johnnie Nmemonic, so that keeps him in line while he is attached to my network. That does remind me that I can do that at his house though, so there's one option. I guess I also should have mentioned that his mother is no where near interested enough in computers to be able to keep a tight network at her house, and his dad has never so much as sent an email or typed 3 w's in a row, so the task pretty much falls to me, and therein lies the challenge. Thanks for the input

Edit; I should also add that his machine runs Vista Home Basic (up to date, of course)

Edited by NegativeSpace
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oops, I guess I should have mentioned that he will only spend about maybe 1/3 of his time on his computer at my house. I actually already use OpenDNS here, but I'm not so much worried about his internet usage at my house because he knows that I have magical computer powers and I can see into my network like Johnnie Nmemonic, so that keeps him in line while he is attached to my network. That does remind me that I can do that at his house though, so there's one option. I guess I also should have mentioned that his mother is no where near interested enough in computers to be able to keep a tight network at her house, and his dad has never so much as sent an email or typed 3 w's in a row, so the task pretty much falls to me, and therein lies the challenge. Thanks for the input

Any software solution can be bypassed in minuets if not seconds, so some thing that is not on the computer is essential.

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That's one of the problems with content filtering systems, it can be easily by-passed. If you know what/how to do.

This approach may not be very efficient, but you could keep an eye on what he does to bypass the restrictions. For instance if he is using an outside proxy to bypass your network restrictions, you could block it.

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I think that is essential, never underestimate what someone can do no matter how young. DNS settings may seem complicated to many but to some even at a young age its really not hard to change them if you know how to do a little research.

I'm mostly interested in using certain techniques to initially stop certain content from being requested or sent. It's not characteristic of my nephew to try to do anything that he knows he isn't allowed to do. He is, however, a ten year old boy and after all, the internet makes it very easy to get any kind of content. If I see a need to enforce very tight policies, I will then act to do so, but as it stands now there is not much need for that. The thing that worries me most is that he will casually, if not completely by accident, view certain kinds of content as the result of using certain terms in a search engine. If I do find a reason to put in place measures to defeat work arounds, then I won't have any trouble in doing so. Problem solving, especially where computers are concerned, is my specialty and something that I like to do. What I had no experience or interest in before a couple years ago was internet child safety and content filtering, so that's really the thing I need help with. In other words, I need suggestions for software, techniques, and the like that are/can be used for child safety, even if they are easy to neutralize. If and when they become neutralized/bypassed/worked around I can handle the fixes.

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I have used this Spector Pro http://www.spectorsoft.com/products/spectorpro_windows/entry.asp, it was good, but I got it free "trial" version, you definitely should check it

He can easily download ubuntu, put it on usb stick and boot from it, You cant stop that happening. So you should talk to he and thell about danger etc.

Edited by Jarmo
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So you should talk to he and thell about danger etc.

Damn right you should, instead of building up your own personal mini-East Germany around him ..

..and to keep track of any personal correspondence that he may have

Then it's hardly personal, is it ?

In order to learn children how not to get hurt by life you need to teach them about life !

Naturally, if the kid is not allowed to know what a penis is,

you will find it hard to teach him that he shouldn't

show it to internet-uncle Bob ..

Besides, he probably already knows those words he's not allowed to see

but since he sounds like a smart kid he's to clever to say them when you guys listen ...

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  • 2 weeks later...

(Trying new approach)

If you found a brand new computer on the side of the road and decided to give it to your ten year old nephew, and you knew that he would be spending 5 to 10 hours a week in range of your personal WIFI,...

What are the first three things that you would do with the new computer?

What are the first three things that you would do with your WIFI router's settings/software?

What are the first three things that you would do with your primary personal machine?

If you decided that you were going on vacation for a month, and you knew that your nephew were still going to have access to your wifi while you were gone, what are the first 3 things that you would do?

(100th post! HAHA)

Edited by NegativeSpace
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one of the best ways to stop him from going to those naughty site is to set the computer up somewhere public like the living room where hes not going to do anything if someone is in the room or might walk in on him.

Well it's a portable computer so he could put it in a bag and climb a tree with it. Can't look over hsi shoulder all the time. That's sort of the reason I want to have software, hardware, and technique solutions in place.

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Any last minute responses before I hand over a computer?

In a few episodes back mubix and Darren are talking about metasploit and they set a persistent ipv6 thing that connects back to your metasploit on reboot. then set matasploit to have keylogger and do screencapture in every 5 min. Well probably not the easiest way to do it, put I guess possible. try armitage, gui for metasploit.

Install a hardware keylogger. Probably not possible cause its laptop.

Remember its not the only computer he will be using. Computers are everywhere, in school, library at his friends so talk to him about dangers. take a light approach on it, dont tell everything once. make it easy to remember.

Remember you cant build a personal mini-Eeast Germany around him ((thanks IOSys)). You cant protect him forever.

think how you would react to things you tell to him at his age.

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