SafeSearch can assist you in removing sexually explicit information from your search results whether you’re using Google Search at home or at work. When children check in to Google, it is turned on by default for them, but it is off for adult users. Today, we’ll demonstrate how to make Google SafeSearch available to everyone on desktop computers and mobile devices. We’ll explain how to lock Google SafeSearch for any device on your network in addition to showing you how to enable or disable it on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS.
How to Enable or Disable Google SafeSearch
Google SafeSearch is a useful function for computers at work and school, although it occasionally causes annoyance when not in use. We will therefore demonstrate how to set or disable Google SafeSearch on any desktop or mobile device in this article. We will discover what Google SafeSearch is and how to activate or deactivate it on the web using your browser as well as in mobile apps for Android and iOS. Without further ado, let’s find out more about Google SafeSearch and see how to turn it on or off right away.
What is Google SafeSearch?
Google created SafeSearch as an automated filter for sexually explicit materials that can be uncomfortable if they appear unexpectedly. Additionally, it is intended to protect kids from potentially dangerous materials at home and at school. SafeSearch, which is applicable to Google Search and Google Image Search, assists in removing explicit results for all of your inquiries spanning photos, videos, and websites.
For users who have logged in who are under 13 or the legal age in their country, the SafeSearch setting is by default set to On. Although it can be controlled through Google’s Family Link app, parents are the only ones who can disable it for child accounts. You can require all devices connected to a network at your place of employment, school, or residence to always use SafeSearch by mapping Google domains to forcesafesearch.google.com.
General users won’t need to jump through hoops to enable or disable Google SafeSearch, in the meantime. On the majority of platforms, including desktop and mobile, it’s comparatively simple to do. Keep in mind, too, that SafeSearch only functions with Google’s search results. It won’t stop consumers from using other search engines or going straight to explicit websites to find explicit content. You can do this by altering your DNS servers or by using the host file on client desktops, which we’ll go over in more detail later in this post.
In either case, follow these steps to enable or disable Google SafeSearch on all of your desktops, laptops, and mobile devices:
Turn Google SafeSearch On or Off Via Web Browser
SafeSearch can be enabled both with and without a Google account. If you remove your browsing history while not logged in, your settings will be lost. When you close the tab or window in a private or incognito tab, the data is lost. On Windows, Mac, and Linux, the procedure is the same.
- Navigate to the Google homepage for your region. Now in the bottom-right corner, click on Settings > Search Settings as seen below.
Note:You can also set your SafeSearch choice directly at google.com/preferences.
- In the Google Preferences page, enable or disable the option that says Turn on SafeSearch . Remember to click on Save at the bottom of the page to save your preference.
Lock Google SafeSearch Using Hosts File on Windows, Mac and Linux
The hosts file in desktop operating systems like Windows, Mac, and Linux translates hostnames to IP addresses. By using it, you can compel Google to disable SafeSearch on that device, forcing it to constantly utilise the function across all browsers. All general search, image search, and video search results on Google will be affected by the setting. This update cannot be undone except by people with administrator rights on the device. Here’s how to use the hosts file to lock SafeSearch on your computer:
Note:To modify the hosts file, you must have administrator rights.
- Open Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell (search cmd or powershell and click on Run as Administrator ). Now enter the command
ping forcesafesearch.google.com -4and hit Enter. This will return the IPV4 address of the Google search domain. Note the IP address. In this case, it is: 22.214.171.124.
- Now we ll have to open the hosts file. For that, copy+paste
C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hostsin the PowerShell console in Admin mode . Hit Enter.
Note:The hosts file is often found under C:WindowsSystem32driversetchosts in Windows setups. The hosts file can be found if Windows is installed in a different location on your computer by typing the following command in the Command Prompt window: cd /d%systemroot%system32driversetc.
- You will be asked to choose a program to open the file. Select Notepad and hit OK .
- In Notepad, create the following entry at the end of hosts file with the IP address you obtained:
126.96.36.199 www.google.com #forcesafesearch. Save your entry (on the top-left, go to File > Save).
Go to Google and verify that SafeSearch is enabled and that it cannot be turned off to make sure it is on. No matter how many times you switch off SafeSearch and try to save your settings, if the hosts file is configured correctly, it will ignore your changes and turn back on without your intervention. Simply remove the entry from the list or prefix it with a # to ensure that it isn’t run in the future to disable it.
On Mac and Linux
On all desktop platforms, there is a small change in the procedure for locking Google SafeSearch. The steps are as follows for Mac and Linux:
- Open Terminal and execute the following Terminal command:
ping forcesafesearch.google.com. Note down the IPV4 address. It will look something like: 188.8.131.52.
- Now enter the command
sudo nano /private/etc/hostson Mac or
sudo nano /etc/hostson Linux and hit enter. Enter your admin password when you see the prompt.
- Create an entry at the end of hosts file with the IP address you obtained. In my case, it would be
184.108.40.206 www.google.com #forcesafesearch. Now save the edited host file.
Finally, visit Google to make that the setting is operational and cannot be changed.
Enable or Disable Google SafeSearch on Android
- Open the Google app on your iPhone or Android device. Now tap on More (three dots) at the bottom right and select Settings on the next page.
- On the Settings page, tap on General . On the next page, scroll down if you have to and switch SafeSearch on or off using the toggle.
There it is. Now that Google SafeSearch is enabled on your Android phone, congratulations.
Enable or Disable Google SafeSearch on iOS
- Open the Google app on your iPhone or iPad. Now tap on your profile picture > Settings.
- Next, select General > Search settings.
- On the Search settings page, find the SafeSearch filters section. You can now choose to hide or show explicit result using the appropriate option.
There it is. Now that Google SafeSearch is enabled on your iPhone or iPad, congrats!
Make Internet Safer for Children with Google SafeSearch
Google SafeSearch is a useful tool that helps protect kids online while also sparing you the embarrassment of having improper results appear for perfectly legitimate queries. However, due to algorithmic oddities and automatic filtering, it can also prevent crucial content from showing up in search results. Go ahead and do it on your computer or smartphone now that you know how to turn it on or off across all devices. Remember to tell us why you felt the need to modify the Google SafeSearch settings on your devices once you’ve done it.