6 Ways to Prevent Your Kids from Bypassing Circle Parental Controls
Circle has become a handy tool for parents looking to balance their family’s screen time by blocking online content and setting limits. For that reason, it’s not always a welcome addition for the whole family. Curious and crafty kids may try to find ways to bypass parental controls. Here are ways you can prevent what is called kid evasion with Circle Home Plus’s advanced parental control router features.
Tactic 1: A kid tries to delete the Circle App
The easiest way for kids to bypass parental controls is to simply delete the app from their devices. Circle will immediately send you a notification that the app was deleted, but you can also set up your kid’s device so that they can’t delete or add any apps without your permission. We recommend the following articles for more details:
- How to resolve evasion issues for iOS
- How to resolve evasion issues for Android
Tactic 2: A kid tries to access admin privileges to change settings from your Circle App
Circle allows you to password protect your Circle App by setting a four-digit pass code, so only you (or anyone who has your pin) can access and change the application settings. Here’s how to set up your pin so that a lock code is always required to gain administrative access to your Circle account.
Tactic 3: A kid tries to factory reset your Circle settings
All parental control settings for your Circle account are saved in the cloud, not on the device, so they remain intact if a manual factory reset is mysteriously deployed on your device. You’ll also receive a message that says, “Your Circle Home Plus has been reset to factory defaults” if this should occur.
Tactic 4: A kid removes the Circle device from its power source
Circle Home Plus comes with a temporary battery backup that will keep the device running if a kid tries to remove it from its power source. Parents will also receive a notification when the battery is low or when Circle Home Plus is powered down.
Tactic 5: A kid disconnects the Circle device from the home network
Circle Home Plus also informs you when your device becomes unplugged from the Ethernet cable or removed from your home’s Wi-Fi so you can address the issue immediately. Kids may also try to unplug the Ethernet connection between Circle and your router. One way to pre-empt this is to use the Circle App to set up Wi-Fi backup or to connect your Circle device over Wi-Fi only so you can hide it out of view but still keep it close to your router.
Tactic 6: A kid tries to break the Circle device
Circle Home Plus has been built with tampering in mind. Kids will have a difficult time attempting to physically open or break it because of the way the hardware was designed. Now you won’t have to worry about probing minds trying to pry open the device to experiment with wires and cables.
Why go the extra mile to resolve evasion tactics?
You probably didn't know this, but identity theft impacting kids is on the rise. Monitoring your kid's Internet usage goes beyond protecting them from problems like social media addiction, obesity, and sleep issues. Furthermore, you'll want to reduce the risk of your kid falling into a phishing trap, visiting harmful websites that could infect your devices, or inadvertently exposing your passwords. Most often, it's hard to recognize identity theft, as the red flags don't appear until later on. Enforcing a screen time management solution like Circle Parental Controls may help prevent kid and family identity theft.
Have a super tech-savvy tween or teen?
No matter what you do to manage and filter screen usage, some kids are just extremely motivated to bypass parental controls settings. Here are more evasion tips for parents of the super tech savvy:
- MAC spoofing: What does MAC spoofing even mean? Simply put, this is when someone creates a new ID number for a specific device and uses it to access the network. Circle allows parents to see these different ID numbers pop up so they can address the issue.
- Installing a new VPN: A virtual private network, or VPN, can be used to get around your standard Wi-Fi and Circle settings. If you’ve set up your kid’s device to prevent app installation and deletion without your permission then you’re covered. You can use also Circle’s VPN and proxies filter category. (Circle will also alert you if any unusual activity occurs.)
- Using another device as a hotspot: A hotspot basically broadcasts a new network that’s not managed by Circle. Talk to your carrier about how to disable hotspot functionality on your kid’s mobile device.
- Using admin-level permissions on a device or router: Some powerful configuration settings for a router or device are only available to administrator-level users. To prevent these from being used to override Circle, we recommend setting up kids as normal users on their devices and keeping admin passwords for the router to yourself.
Kid evasion and Circle 1st generation
The first-generation Circle with Disney device offers pin code lock and app notifications to help avoid kid evasion issues. Here are more differences between the latest Circle Home Plus system and the original first-two Circle generations.