Safety of Skype Overseas

Let me preface this post with the following caveat. I am not an expert in internet security and what I present is my impressions of what I’ve read on the internet. Just recently I received an e-mail from a colleague asking if it is safe to use Skype to communicate with people in China. She […]

Free Parental/Web Filter

As much as we use the internet today in ministry, we are often exposed to stuff that we don’t want to be exposed to. There is a lot of bad stuff out there from sexual explicit sites, to online gambling sites, to phishing sites, all sorts of things that are bad for a ministry related person to see and be exposed to. Also as a parent of a budding resourceful teenager who goes all over the internet I am concerned about him going to sites that are not appropriate for children to see. Also, our supporters probably would like to know that we are taking steps to protect ourselves as ministry leaders from this same material. A 2000 Christianity Today survey found that 37 percent of pastors said pornography is a “current struggle” of theirs. Fifty-seven percent called pornography the most sexually damaging issue for their congregations. We need protection!We have all tried different solutions, ones that we had to pay for, others that make the computer painfullly slow. I personally got so frustrated with most of the ones that I have used in the past, I just gave up and hoped that my talks were enough.

In the last couple of months, I have been asked about what is available. I want to share about two free solutions K9 Web Protection and Open DNS (here is an article comparing the two) that don’t bog down the computer, is good at blocking most “bad” sites and most important, is capable of monitoring internet use, which allows a level of accountability for the internet user, seen as the most effective way of stopping addictive “bad” internet use. The trick is to find a solution that will not block you from sites you need but blocks you from sites you don’t in a way that is generally unseen and unfelt when you are doing the right thing.