Googling something has sort of become the typical way of getting your questions answered. We say “Google it!” and leave it up to the Internet to tell us the correct answer or point us in the right direction. However, we as adults know how to filter through the results, determining which result works best for us and ignoring whatever else may come up; in essence, we have better judgment skills. But our children (for the most part) do not. It’s easy to run into pornography when searching on Google, especially when tools like SafeSearch aren’t being used. And because of that, we, as parents, have to be vigilant.
At the same time, not everyone uses Google as their search engine; some use Yahoo or Bing. Most of the time it’s because Yahoo or Bing is simply their homepage, which they haven’t bothered to change, or it’s the default search engine tied to their web browser i.e. Internet Explorer.
Since Internet Explorer is still the dominant web browser on the market, it’s important that parents know how to enable the “safe search” function on the popular search engines. Knowing this can help lessen the chances of their child running into inappropriate content when searching. In the past, I’ve strictly recommended Google as a family search engine due to their SafeSearch feature, and though they do it well, they’re not the only ones who offer this option.
Yahoo Safe Search
- Go to Yahoo.com and search for anything.
- On the page with your search results, click the green shield that is located in the upper right hand corner (shown below).
- That should take you to a page titled Search Preferences.
- NOTE: You need to be signed into your Yahoo account in order for these settings to be saved.
- Go down to the section titled “Safe Search” (outlined in red in the screenshot below) and click the blue edit button that is on the right hand side.
- From there you will be taken to a page with settings for Safe Search. You can set it up so that it blocks all adult content such as videos, pictures, links, etc.
- If you want to lock the Safe Search settings you can click the check-box labeled “SafeSearch lock” which is directly below the Safe Search Filter options. When you’re done click save.
- Click Finished on the Search Preferences page and you’re all done!
Bing Safe Search
- Click the gear icon in the upper right hand corner (Outlined in red in the screenshot below).
- Clicking the gear icon will take you to Preferences page and from there you can set up your search filters.
- When you’re done setting up Safe Search click the yellow Save button in the upper right hand corner. Unfortunately, you cannot save your Safe Search settings for Bing since the settings aren’t tied in any way to your user account.
So there you have it. As you can see, Bing isn’t the best option for families since you can’t lock SafeSearch. In the end, I recommend going with Yahoo or Google, which you can find instructions for right here. If you or anyone else you know have any other safe searching tips, please share in the comments below!