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How-tos

How to set up parental controls on a Chromebook

When you’re a parent, your list of worries feels a mile long and it grows every day. Once your kids are old enough to use a computer, that list gets even longer.

It’s important your kids understand your internet rules once they get their own laptops, and Kim can help. Tap or click here to download Kim’s free safety contract for parents and kids.

It’s time to limit what your little one can do on his or her Chromebook. You can do this through Google’s Family Link platform. Here’s how to set it up and what settings you can control.

Set up Google Family Link

To start, set up a Family Link account for your child. Tap or click here to download on your iPhone or Android smartphone. If you have more than one kid, set up an account for each of them. Family Link can be used with Chromebooks running Chrome OS versions 71 or higher.

Once Family Link is applied to your kid’s account, they won’t be able to use Chrome apps or extensions, or even browse in private. You can also manage which websites they can visit, limit the permissions he or she can grant to websites and block sexually explicit and violent sites.

If you’re setting up a new Chromebook, here’s how to add your child’s account:

  • If you’re signed in to your Chromebook, sign out.
  • On the bottom, click Add person.
  • Enter the Google Account email address and password, then click Next.
  • Follow the steps that appear.

If you’re adding your child’s account to a Chromebook that’s already set up, follow the steps above, then be sure to disable guest mode and control who can sign in. If you don’t do this, your child may be able to use the Chromebook without Family Link limitations.

Manage web browsing

Open the Family Link app, then select your child from the list of users. On the Settings card, tap Manage settings >> Filters on Google Chrome. Here are your options:

  • Allow all sites: Your child will be able to visit all sites, except the ones you block.
  • Try to block mature sites: Hide sexually explicit and violent sites.
  • Only allow certain sites: Your child will only be able to visit the sites you allow.
  • Tap Manage sites to manually allow or block certain sites.

Block (or allow) certain sites

  • Open the Family Link app, then select your child.
  • Settings >> Manage settings Filters on Google Chrome >> Manage sites >> Approved or Blocked.
  • In the bottom right corner, tap Create.
  • Add a website or domain.
  • In the top left, tap Close.

Disable apps you don’t want your child to see

You can also use Family Link to block or limit access to certain apps. Change this setting to keep your child from downloading inappropriate apps to their Chromebook:

  • Open the Family Link app, then select your child.
  • Settings >> Manage settings >> Controls on Google Play.
  • Under Content restrictions, choose your filters:
    • Apps, Games, Movies and TV: Choose the highest maturity level of content you want to allow for download or purchase.
    • Music and Books: Choose whether you want to restrict downloads or purchases of explicit content.

Change permissions

Here’s how to control what permissions your child can share with websites they visit. This includes location settings, camera and notifications.

  • Open the Family Link app, and select your child.
  • Settings >> Manage settings >> Filters on Google Chrome >> Chrome dashboard.
  • Turn Permissions for sites and apps on or off.

You can also choose permissions for apps.

  • Open the Family Link app and select your child.
  • On the Apps installed card, tap More.
  • On the Allowed list, tap the app you want to change your child’s permissions for.
  • Tap App permissions.
  • Switch the permission on or off.

Set screen time limits

You don’t want your kid spending all day glued to a computer. You can set screen time limits, and your child will be locked out once that time expires. Manage screentime with these steps:

  • Open the Family Link app, and select your child.
  • On the Daily limit card, tap Set up or Edit limits.
  • Follow the instructions on the screen to set daily limits.

You can even add bonus time without changing your child’s daily limit.

  • Open the Family Link app and select your child.
  • On the card for your child’s Chromebook, the Bonus time chip will appear when your child’s device is locking soon or if your child’s device has already locked.
  • Tap Bonus time. 
  • Follow the instructions on the screen to give your child bonus time for the day.

And there you have it. Now you have all the information you need to protect your kids from dangerous online content. For more internet safety tips, tap or click here.

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