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Parental Supports Section

Support: Basics: Parents: Master Control Accounts

Some of us have children, too, and we understand the difficult balancing act parents struggle with between protecting their children from online dangers and respecting their privacy. For that reason, we recently added Master Control Accounts to our offerings.

If at any time, you need additional explanation or guidance, please email helpdesk at cotse.net or use our "live chat" support. Please note that we will not assist you in invading your child's privacy, as we believe that children have the right to some privacy, too. We will, however, try to help you protect your child's privacy.

Related Files or Site Sections of Special Interest to Parents:

What a Cotse.Net Master Control Account CAN DO For You

What a Cotse.Net Master Control Account CAN NOT DO For You

Email:

Like some other services or ISPS, Cotse.Net offers a plan to enable parents to set some controls for email and web-surfing. Unlike other plans where the kids usually figure out how to change the settings or evade them by changing their login name and password, with a Cotse.Net master control account, you can add your family members or friends whose email accounts will all be filtered according to the rules you set in the "master" settings, and they will not be able to override those settings as long as they are using their Cotse account.

As long as you protect your own password to the master control account so that they can't get it, only you can set or alter master controls on email. Your children (or other family members on your list of who's covered by the rules) will still have some rules and settings that they can customize and they will still be able to do certain things, but you can set some limits or prohibitions. The restrictiveness of the email rules is up to the master control account holder.

As the master control account manager, you can also decide whether the rules apply to just your kids or also to yourself. If you want the same rules to apply to your own email, then simply add your name to the list of family members or friends covered by the master email controls. There is no extra charge for your master account.

If you want to have different rules for your email than your children (or friends) covered by the account do, then don't include yourself in the list and use your own Cotse account for your mail rules.

Web Surfing:

With a Cotse.Net account, you have a choice of using any of our three web proxies, or none of them. If your kids are away at college, they can still have the protection of our proxy by simply logging in to their account and using the proxy link from within their account.

Chat:

With a Cotse.Net account, you get a link to Chat that can be used to take you to our own chat server, but it can also be used to jump to any other chat server that accepts a proxy connection. No need for chat software, and your IP address is protected.

We believe in being "upfront" with parents. And although the "can't do" exclusions also apply to our competitors, we feel that parents need to be very clear about what we cannot assure:

Although we give you the option to use highly restrictive email rules such as password-protected subject lines (whereby a sender's email is not delivered unless it contains that password phrase as the subject line), we cannot stop your children from giving out that password phrase to those you might not wish to have it. Even if you were to create a goldlist system so only those on the approved "senders" list could send mail to your children, there is nothing that stops your child(ren) from suggesting that someone forge or spoof that approved email address to send mail to them.

There is no way we can stop your child from bypassing your rules altogether by creating a free email account at Hotmail or any other service and then using that account without your knowledge.

In other words, if your child is bound and determined to evade your rules and has a little net-savvy, they can probably get around your system.

Although we give you the instructions to enable anonymous web surfing through a proxy that blocks popups and sites and javascript, if your child is on another computer or understands browser settings, they can evade the proxy, leaving them unprotected and your privacy compromised. Again, this is true for our competitors' products, too.

Even if we give you a way to protect your IP in chat rooms, we cannot prevent your child from giving out their -- or your -- personal details.

No system is perfect. Parenting is the toughest job we know, and we remind all parents that software is never a complete substitute for parental supervision and educating your child about the risks.


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