Software helps parents oversee children on Facebook

Apr 26, 2011
A 10-year-old boy looks at a video on the internet. Internet security firm Check Point on Tuesday launched software that lets parents watch over offspring on Facebook without being "friends" at the online social network.

Internet security firm Check Point on Tuesday launched software that lets parents watch over offspring on Facebook without being "friends" at the online social network.

ZoneAlarm SocialGuard alerts parents to signs of trouble in a child's Facebook account without them being privy to all posts, comments, pictures, videos or other shared between friends at the website.

The program scans Facebook profiles, communications and "friend" requests and uses algorithms to identify potential bullying, sexual overtures, or talk of drugs, violence or suicide.

SocialGuard software runs unseen in the background, flagging suspicious activity and sending alerts to parents, according to its Redwood City, California-based creators.

"It's about protecting your kids from the social threats out there, while still respecting their privacy and fostering open communication," said Check Point vice president of consumer sales Bari Abdul.

"We are offering Facebook users a simple way to embrace safely," he continued.

SocialGuard is crafted to detect hacked accounts, malicious links, online predators, and cyber-bullies, according to Check Point.

The software also checks to determine whether people contacting children online are being deceptive about their ages or if a stranger is trying to become a Facebook "friend."

"Parents are increasingly concerned, and rightfully so, about the dramatically increasing trend of criminals, predators and bullies targeting children over social networks," said analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group in Silicon Valley.

"SocialGuard provides a strong suite of tools that can effectively protect children from these types of social threats that are keeping parents awake at night."

Check Point cited a survey indicating that 38 percent of teenagers have ignored requests from parents to be friends on , and that 16 percent of have only done so as a condition of using the social network.

SocialGuard was available online at zonealarm.com for $2 monthly or $20 annually.

Explore further: People stick with favorites in sea of mobile apps

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Facebook glitch exposes chat messages (Update 2)

May 05, 2010

Facebook on Wednesday temporarily shut down its online chat feature after a software glitch let people's friends in the online community see each others' private chat messages.

Facebook membership hits 500 million mark

Jul 21, 2010

The number of people using Facebook hit the 500 million mark on Wednesday, meaning one in every 14 people on the planet has now signed up to the online social-networking service.

Recommended for you

Does your computer know how you're feeling?

14 hours ago

Researchers in Bangladesh have designed a computer program that can accurately recognize users' emotional states as much as 87% of the time, depending on the emotion.

Microsoft to unveil new Windows software

Aug 21, 2014

A news report out Thursday indicated that Microsoft is poised to give the world a glimpse at a new-generation computer operating system that will succeed Windows 8.

Unlocking the potential of simulation software

Aug 21, 2014

With a method known as finite element analysis (FEA), engineers can generate 3-D digital models of large structures to simulate how they'll fare under stress, vibrations, heat, and other real-world conditions.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

rynox
1 / 5 (1) Apr 26, 2011
leave your kids alone. yeesh.