There are times in life when people can’t help but cry out “why has this taken so long?” and today could indeed be considered one of those days as Microsoft, in conjunction with UK Child Protection Agency CEOP have released a child-friendly version of their Internet Explorer web browser
The browser is essentially IE9 as standard with some additional web links and Jumplists embedded into it, and the browser’s content protection feature already turned on. There is a dedicated startup tab for the “ThinkuKnow” website, where children can get online safety advice, and a kid-friendly jumplist with quick links to services such as their online Safety Centre.
With so many more children now online and at much younger ages than ever before this will be welcomed by parents both in the UK and elsewhere, where the parental control features will still work.
While kids can see CEOP links in the Jumplist, parents will see a different jumplist where they will be able to set the age range of their child or children. From this IE9 will take over and block any inappropriate content. There are also settings for both teachers and vulnerable adults, making the browser useful in places where computers are accessed by mentally handicapped people you might not wish to view such material, or where you might not want inappropriate web content appearing in a classroom.
Now I should point out that this is no catch-all and occasionally some things will filter through, but as a general idea goes I have to take my hat off to Microsoft but chastise them equally for taking so long to get around to it. Frankly this feature should have been built into Windows years ago.
You can download the modified browser from the ThinkuKnow website and if you have young children, the browser supports children up to 16 years of age, then it can only be a worthwhile addition to the family PC.