PROS / It offers user-specific internet content filters.
CONS / Chat monitoring and screenshots are available only with an add-on purchase.
VERDICT / CYBERsitter is a mixed bag of useful tools and missing features – it performs capably but leaves you wanting more.
Editor's Note: This review has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it no longer ranks as a top 10 product. The original review is below, but check out our current top 10 about Internet Filter Software here.
CYBERsitter is an efficient website blocker and pornography filter with an even number of strengths and weaknesses. Its filtering and blocking features perform well and offer a good range of internet safety coverage, but its lack of some key activity recording features causes it to rank low in our comparison of the top 10 internet filter software programs available.
Automatic cyberbullying detection, which is a feature included in some of the top-ranked products on our list, is not available with CYBERsitter. However, you can purchase an additional software suite that makes it possible to monitor your children’s online chat conversations, as well as record all the keystrokes they make. This can be helpful in determining if your kids are being cyberbullied or engaging in inappropriate conversations with adults.
CYBERsitter allows you to set filters that control what kind of content is allowed or blocked for specific users. This is done by accessing the administrator dashboard and choosing the appropriate options, which include categories such as adults only content, social networking and inappropriate for kids. When you set content-based controls, you can do so for individual users. However, when you block a specific site based on URL, it impacts all users and effectively prevents that site from being accessed by anyone.
Additional features include a time management feature and social network tool. With time management, you can control exactly how many hours your child spends online per day. Unfortunately, time limits can't be set for individual users and restrictions apply to everyone who uses the same computer. The social network tool allows you to block access to certain social sites and applications.
CYBERsitter’s activity recording features are limited to social network activity and websites visited, with the ability to log keystrokes and monitor online chat requiring the purchase of additional software. Help and support is equally limited with no live chat or telephone options and email as the only method of communication. The online knowledgebase is scant and is not keyword searchable, making it difficult to resolve issues quickly.
CYBERsitter's content filtering feature is a useful tool in preventing your children from being exposed to inappropriate online material, but the small number of activity recording features limits your ability to monitor all activity. If you're looking for software to enforce online time limits and block off-limit sites, it may be the right program for you.