A Parents Guide to iOS

Parents let’s face it the smartphone is the future and our kids will always want the newest ones. There are also many concerns with this trend like privacy, security, and censorship. As you read you will learn ways to protect your kids that have an iOS device.
Most of what you are about to read about will come from the “Restrictions” preference pane which can be navigated to by going to Settings–>General–>Restrictions

Once there click enable restrictions. Now you must create a  4-digit numeric password and enter it twice. it is important to remember this password because it can not be reset.

iOS App Store

When I say iOS stores I’m talking about the App Store, iTunes Store, Podcast, and the iBooks Store. In these stores, you can buy movies, tv shows, books, music, and apps. Although all of this content has to follow Apple’s strict guidelines some are made, rated, and sold for mature audiences. In the restrictions pane, you can limit a user to certain ratings. For instance, you have a 3-year-old you might want to limit them to “G” only movies and for your 15 years old you might let them watch “PG-13”. In order to enable this go to the third group.

Now choose your location. You must choose your location because each country has a different scale. Now you can choose the ratings to limit by clicking into each content category.  The aloud rating will have a checkmark to the right. Now, what if you want to remove the stores altogether? That’s easy to do.

Go to the second group and toggle all of the apps you want to disable. Once an app is disabled it will not appear on the home screen unless enabled again. If you want to download any content do it now before you remove it.  For apps installed from the App Store, you can keep users from deleting already installed apps or from installing new apps, installing new apps, or even making In-App Purchases. Disabling in-app purchases is smart to do especially if your Apple ID is connected to it.

The Internet

The internet is a great resource for information including helpful sites like Wikipedia and Google. But I can also be used for the not so good including sites on the dark web. To prevent this you can limit access to only certain sites or to block Adult content.

To further your protection you can enable a content blocker. Content Blockers which purchased from the App Store and can filter and block all sorts of things from ads or sites that contain the words Trump (Trump Trump – Block Trump content).

You can also block access to Safari altogether by clicking the Safari toggle in the first group. Disabling Safari will remove it from your home screen but will not remove any other browsers you might have like Chrome or Firefox.


Privacy is very important that’s why Apple imposes strict privacy rules. For instance, apps can only track your location, access your contacts, and calendar if you give them permission to do so. You can change your privacy setting at any time in the Privacy preference pane in settings. In restriction, you can keep users from changing their current privacy settings by clicking “Don’t Allow Changes” in each feature. For example, if you track your child’s iOS device’s location you can enable “Don’t Allow Changes” so that way they can not stop sharing your location with you. Which brings us to the next subject.

Find My Friends

If your child device is connected with your AppleID and Find My iPhone is enabled on their device then the device will show up in Find My iPhone. Although if you are on different AppleID you will have to use the pre-installed application Find My Friends. With Find My Friends you are able to find anyone using their AppleID. The way this works is that your AppleID shares only one of your device’s location and you can choose which one. Then the location of that device will be shared with anyone you like. For your own privacy you can set it up to see your child’s location but they can not see yours. The way to do this is to send a request to them. You will then receive a “follow back” request in which you can decline.

Mobile Data and Phone

With more and more apps using the internet like game data, streaming services like Netflix and Apple Music, or the internet in general.  It’s getting easier and easier to go over on your data. Some apps even use your data to show annoying ads. To fix this problem turn off apps to use your data by going to Settings–>Mobile Data then flip the apps switch on the right. To keep the user from changing these settings go to restrictions then tap on mobile data at the bottom of the menu and tap on “Don’t allow changes” under the mobile data option.