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New Tool to Help Monitor Kids' Activity Online
Parents, there's a new tool to help you monitor your kids on the internet. One Texas dad developed software that monitors children's social networking activity for language, cyberbullying, sexting and even violence.
"My immediate reaction was one of amazement, disgust." For Texas dad Mitch Butler - it all started with something as seemingly innocent - as seeing his then-13-year-old daughter's phone - light up.
"It was a group text from a boy at school that had an inappropriate text and image," Mitch Butler said.
A startling jolt of reality - his inspiration behind the founding of company Image Vision - and later? The eye guardian app.
"It initially started as an anti-sexting effort."
From phones - now to Facebook, Eye Guardian lets parents connect into their child's social networking account, filtering images for nudity, inappropriate text, even suspect "friends" - emailing a daily report to mom and dad.
"We look at the images and messages and friends here are images that might be suspect, here is text that may have curse words."
But these days, they're focusing on taking internet security one step further - now focusing on filtering through potentially violent imagery.
"It's something we're coming out with, gun recognition. Not that a gun is necessarily as an image is bad or good, but if you can connect that with other activities that they're posting, it could be insight into maybe this is someone who is getting ready to harm themselves."
Here, context is key - software sifting through words and pictures - to separate a family hunting trip - from something as serious as a potential school shooter.
A concept - they're starting to use to consult with school districts - nationwide. After all, as Butler says - in the world of the internet - it's not necessarily what kids are searching for but who's looking for them.
"Really the goal is to provide parents a tool to help them help their kids be safer on Facebook."
If you would like to monitor your kids social life on the web, just head to the Eye Guardian website: