You’re here for one of two reasons:
1. You want to build better digital habits for yourself and block access to porn, gambling, or another vice.
2. You want to protect your family from accidentally or intentionally finding inappropriate content online (nudity, violence, social media, etc).
You may even be interested in doing both. And it is possible to use your router to block such content. I’ve tested it myself.
But I’ve also tested, and now permanently use, a better method for blocking adult content.
So in this how-to guide, I’ll give you the exact steps you can take to block websites on your router and I’ll show you how to do the same thing, only better, with Canopy.
How to Block Websites Using Router Settings
Here’s the method, its benefits, and step-by-step instructions I used to block a website on my computer using my router.
Most routers come with website filtering options.
You can use these options to set up a rule that blocks specific websites, guaranteeing that anyone connected to your home Wi-Fi can’t access it.
Blocking websites at the router level ensures the website is inaccessible across all devices, (PCs, smartphones, tablets, or even smart TVs) as long as they’re connected to your router.
Step by Step Walkthrough to Block Websites with Your Router
1. Access your router’s settings
Open a web browser and enter your router’s IP address (it will look something like: “192.168.1.1” or “192.168.0.1”).
You may need to consult your router’s manual for the specific address.
🤔Need help finding your IP address? Check out this article for How to Geek.
2. Log in
Enter your username and password for the router.
If you haven’t set these, they’re probably set to a default login. Check your router’s manual or the sticker on the back of your router if that’s the case.
3. Head to ‘Parental Controls’ or ‘Website Filtering’
Look for sections like “Parental Controls,” “Access Restrictions,” or “Website Filtering”. The exact name will vary based on the router brand. Mine was called parental controls.
4. Add the URL to the block list
There should be an option to block specific websites. Add the URL and any related domains to the list.
5. Save and apply
Confirm your settings and save. You might need to restart the router and/or your computer for the changes to take effect.
And that’s all you need to do to block websites on your router.
Where this method falls short:
The router method has plenty of loopholes that you or your family can use to access inappropriate content.
Because this blocking method relies on connection to WiFi, the second you or your child turns WiFi off on their phone the router’s blocks are ineffective. All they have to do is leave the house or turn off their network connection and switch to data to get around the parental controls.
This method also only blocks the websites you’ve put in. New websites pop up every day and plenty of them will have inappropriate content. It will be impossible to comprehensively block everything that’s harmful when using your router.
So, what do you do? Personally, I turned to Canopy.
A Better Method: How to Block Inappropriate Websites with Canopy
It blocks specific sites and apps while also filtering adult content in real time. That means if you search for something inappropriate in Google, the Canopy app will automatically filter out results including images.
It also works on websites, even department store websites which often display partial nudity.
Watch the video below to learn more about the Smart Filter (it’s by far my favorite feature):
Canopy works across all devices for comprehensive control over what you see and experience online, whether you’re at home connected to your router or out and about using data.
You’re able to block a site and, thanks to removal prevention, can trust that the settings won’t be undone unless you say so.
If you want to block content for yourself, you can give someone you trust admin access (e.g. a girlfriend/boyfriend or trusted friend).
In addition to website and app blocking, Canopy also comes with screen time limits, location alerts, sexting prevention, and real-time content filtering.
Kara Goodie uses Canopy to protect her children from inappropriate adult websites. Here’s her first-hand experience with the app:
Why it’s number one:
Canopy’s protection covers multiple devices and accounts. So no matter what or where you’re browsing (PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, etc.) you and your family are protected.
If you have multiple children who need individual levels of parental control, you can adjust each of their settings from the main account.
Check out the video below to hear why parents choose Canopy:
How to Block Websites Using Canopy
Here’s how I use Canopy to block websites across my devices.
1. Sign-up to Canopy: Register for a Canopy account and start a free trial.
2. Install the Canopy for Kids app: Download the app onto every device you’d like to protect. Here’s how you can do that.
3: Set up your chosen protection filters: Log into Canopy, click ‘Device Settings’ on the app or “Protection Settings’ on the web dashboard. Then select ‘Advanced Filtering.’
4: Block Websites: In the dashboard click ‘Websites’ and then ‘Add Website.’
5: Enter the URL you wish to block: Select the level of protection you would like. Then, hit save.
- ‘Filtered’ = Canopy will filter the app for inappropriate content
- ‘Unfiltered’ = Canopy will not filter any of the content within the app
- ‘Blocked’ – Canopy will prevent your child from accessing the app.
And that’s all it takes to block certain websites from your computer using Canopy. The real-time content filtering will be activated as soon as you set up the account on each device.
What website types are worth blocking?
According to Siteefy, there are 201,898,446 active websites. And everyday about 252,000 new websites are created. It’s hard to predict how many of those will contain inappropriate content.
But you and I know that even innocent searches can quickly turn up inappropriate results.
We have to do our best for ourselves and our children to block as many as possible and minimize the damage seeing violence, nudity, hateful ideas can do to our brains.
Here are the types of website worth blocking:
- Gambling sites
- Sites that show violence
- Youtube and other social media sites
- Sites with access to mature games
- Drug-related sites
With Canopy, you can rely on its real-time filtering feature to block access to nudity and to block the URLs of specific websites and apps completely.
Common questions I get about blocking websites
How do I block adult websites on my router?
Most routers have built-in parental controls where you can blacklist adult websites. For a more refined filter, consider using Canopy—it works across all devices and all networks including WiFI and mobile data.
How do I block Youtube on my home WiFi?
Head to your router settings and find the URL blacklist or filtering section. Add “youtube.com” to it. You could also use Canopy to block both the Youtube site and the app.
How do I permanently block websites on my phone?
Different phones have different settings, but a universal approach is to use a parental control app. Canopy stands out with its precision blocking, ensuring you can enjoy your device without unwanted distractions or inappropriate content.
Additional Website Blocking Resources
Here are some additional resources to help you block inappropriate websites and apps on various devices: