IT Tip of the Week: How to Make an iPad Child Safe with Parental Controls

As the father of a young child and an owner of an iPad, I sometimes find that the two things are inextricably attracted to each other… or at least that’s how it seems!  My son Jacob who is five years olds, seems to be able to get his hands on it at will, and more often than that not fires off a garbled email to an office colleague or manages to lose a web page I was on.  Although I must be grateful for small mercies as thankfully he has not figured out how to order on iTunes yet.

I don’t want to not let him use the iPad as I’ve downloaded some educational apps for him to use… but there is the risk still of him doing something accidentally whilst the iPad in his hands.

However, over the last couple of weeks I’ve been on damage limitation mode and managed to set up parental controls on the iPad to make things a little bit safer.  The iPad parental control settings are enabled by entering a passcode into the iPad which means you can then set different restrictions depending on the user.  When you have done this you can then enable restrictions for the browser, apps, music, and movies.  This is how you do it.

How to Set Up iPad Parental Controls

Access the settings via the Settings icon on the iPad home screen. It’s the one that looks like a load of cogs.  In there you can choose the General Settings which can be found on the left hand side.  Touch that and you will see a new screen and about 8 rows down there will be a button titled Restrictions so touch that next.

iPad Parental Controls

How to set up parental controls and restrictions on an iPad

Now touch the Enable Restrictions button.  This will open up a new window box which will ask you enter in a 4 digit password.  You will need to enter it twice for confirmation.

Once you have done this you can then set up the restrictions you want. So for example, if you don’t want certain apps to appear on the screen whilst your child is using them then you can disable them.  Personally I like to disable the Safari Browser, the App Store, and my Email.  This way he can only play the apps that I have personally downloaded and enabled for him.

It’s really simple, and the next time I hand the iPad over to my son, I quickly enter the passcode I generated with his restrictions applied – then I have peace of mind that damage limitation is set to minimum!

This blog post was written by Sam, one of our longest serving IT technicians.

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