Possible to see individual device/user web activity?

MKDCMKDC Member Posts: 5
First Comment
edited February 8 in Devices & Security

Is it possible to view websites and other details of a specific device or user, and block or always allow certain websites?


i have the latest version Fingbox just purchased (but being returned if answer is no!).

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  • MarcMarc Moderator, Beta Tester Posts: 2,126
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    Hi @MKDC, web site blacklisting and whitelisting are not a function of the Fingbox.  It has a mandate of device level management,  including reporting, certain attack vector mitigations and device blocking.  What you're looking for could be possible already via your router if it has parental controls, or via an external DNS system like open DNS or a host of other website blocking offerings.
    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
    thomasmerz
  • MKDCMKDC Member Posts: 5
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    Accepted Answer
    I have returned my Fing but again, it says right on the box that it is for family protection.  So I say yes, they are going after parental controls market.  I was also very disappointed in the 7 day trial for the premium service -- 7 days isn't enough to evaluate.  Anyway, I returned and purchased a Firewalla Gold, which is 4x the price but hopefully does what I want and doesn't have a monthly cost.
    nozero

Answers

  • MKDCMKDC Member Posts: 5
    First Comment

    Well that’s a bummer. I wanted to use fingbox as advanced parental controls but it appears to be useless in that regard. Back to Circle I guess, which has major security deficiencies and other issues but at least allows individual website control which is essential.

    Ferf
  • DebbieDebbie Member Posts: 5
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    there ia an app called blocksi  it's an extension on chrome you can block certain websites apps a lot of different things
  • MKDCMKDC Member Posts: 5
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    Yeah that seems completely and utterly useless.  I don't want an extension or anything like that.  Of course there are lots of solutions to do what I want but I am looking for a powerful parental controls device and fingbox definitely isn't it.  Piece of junk tbh.  Seems to have value as a network monitor but not parental controls.
  • MarcMarc Moderator, Beta Tester Posts: 2,126
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    MKDC said:
    Piece of junk tbh.  Seems to have value as a network monitor but not parental controls.
    Thats a bit harsh... ;)   To be fair, there have been people requesting the feature you're asking for but Fing has stayed away from it because effectively you would be asking it to be something similar to a router, where all traffic would need to route through it.  For what it does, aka gatekeeper for keeping folks out of ones wifi network, for limiting network access for devices in general when needed, and reporting...  It does a pretty good job.  Is it perfect?  No...  But then again, nothing is, considering the vastness of computing permutations it has to deal with.
    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
  • MKDCMKDC Member Posts: 5
    First Comment

    I get your point Marc but they are advertising this hard as a parental controls device. Says on the box “protect your family” which is pure nonsense. This is a network security device. Not parental controls.

    ato53The_Vorlon
  • MarcMarc Moderator, Beta Tester Posts: 2,126
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    Point taken... Appreciated the conversation @MKDC...  
    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
  • DebbieDebbie Member Posts: 5
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    edited February 8
    there is qustodio parental control app very  good I used it on my grandsons cost about 60.00 year
    schapman
  • schapmanschapman Member Posts: 2
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    I use Qustodio as well to monitor my child. No issues with that. I got it after having the same disappointment that you can't do it with fing. I use OpenDNS but the logs for site activity include EVERYTHING that loads so trying to look through them is a bit overwhelming.

  • thomasmerzthomasmerz Member Posts: 31
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    MKDC said:

    Well that’s a bummer. I wanted to use fingbox as advanced parental controls but it appears to be useless in that regard. Back to Circle I guess, which has major security deficiencies and other issues but at least allows individual website control which is essential.

    You could use Pihole to protect all devices in your WiFi and LAN. Plus you can block specific websites for specific devices.

  • ShaganastyShaganasty Member, Beta Tester Posts: 1
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    MKDC said:

    Is it possible to view websites and other details of a specific device or user, and block or always allow certain websites? i have the latest version Fingbox just purchased (but being returned if answer is no!).

    Look to the synology rt2600ac router, I’m certain it will fit your needs plus....


  • PixelPixel Devon, U.K.Moderator Posts: 101
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    Fing doesn’t offer, or advertise, parental controls AFAIK. As observed earlier it does offer network security and the ability to control devices trying to access the local network & the ability to block devices connected to the network if required. Most ISP provided routers offer parental control with varying levels of success but none are perfect.
    thomasmerz
  • The_VorlonThe_Vorlon Member, Beta Tester Posts: 42
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    MKDC said:

    Is it possible to view websites and other details of a specific device or user, and block or always allow certain websites?


    i have the latest version Fingbox just purchased (but being returned if answer is no!).

    that isn't what Fingbox does -as others have noted it is basically a network monitor.  For marketing, Fing touts the Fingbox product as network security, and parental family control, but in reality it doesn't really do that.  Apparently in their minds, since it has some ability to block rogue devices on a network it is 'security and family control' - which is essentially bullshit.  As an early adopter and beta tester, Fing falls short in multiple areas for network security.  
    Marc
  • thomasmerzthomasmerz Member Posts: 31
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    that isn't what Fingbox does -as others have noted it is basically a network monitor.  For marketing, Fing touts the Fingbox product as network security, and parental family control, but in reality it doesn't really do that.  Apparently in their minds, since it has some ability to block rogue devices on a network it is 'security and family control' - which is essentially bullshit.  As an early adopter and beta tester, Fing falls short in multiple areas for network security.  

    But it indeed helps to improve network security
    • by getting informed when a new device enters LAN or WiFi,
    • by blocking new devices by default; so if my kids "share" WiFi passwords, I have to allow them to enter my LAN/WiFi,
    Both on a admittedly low level because real attackers know how to spoof MAC addresses and don't care about the consequences ;-) And there's no 100% garanteed security available. Everyone should know this. It's all about minimizing risks…

    I like the killer feature about stopping internet for my kids on a scheduled base :wink:
    Pixel
  • The_VorlonThe_Vorlon Member, Beta Tester Posts: 42
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    But it indeed helps to improve network security
    • by getting informed when a new device enters LAN or WiFi,
    • by blocking new devices by default; so if my kids "share" WiFi passwords, I have to allow them to enter my LAN/WiFi,
    Both on a admittedly low level because real attackers know how to spoof MAC addresses and don't care about the consequences ;-) And there's no 100% garanteed security available. Everyone should know this. It's all about minimizing risks…

    I like the killer feature about stopping internet for my kids on a scheduled base :wink:
    It may 'help' however it way too often misinforms or provides information about typical, standard network behaviors that uniformed users misinterpret as being 'hacked'  -  just read these forums.  Fing does a poor job of explaining these things in simple easy to understand explanations, and is poorly documented.  
    As for wifi protection - that is child's play to get around, my children are now out of the house but my son figured it out back in 2010 when he was 14.   
    Fing Issues:
    - Fing lacks VLAN awareness - which is a key feature in any smart home environment that follows best practices of isolating IoT devices to a separate network.  
    - Fing has issues with multiple SSID on the same network segment, and tends to track them as independent networks, failing to understand that they are all on the same subnet. 
    - Fing uses simple MAC address spoofing to deny devices to a network - easily bypassed (and Fing could be spoofed itself)
    -Fing does not support static addressing - yes you can use a DHCP reservation to assign a fixed address but that is just a work around - a best practice is to have your network devices, security platforms and monitoring on a separate network segment or a VLAN (which Fing doesn't support) and use static IP addresses.
    - Fing does not, as it advertises, detect hidden cameras - first off it can't see a camera on a separate VLAN, and there are cameras that can be hidden, set only to capture data to be retrieved later - hardwired to a separate LAN or VlAN (example, cameras wired to a DVR or NVR, bluetooth, physical retrieval - or any number of ways - basically Fing uses weasel words and marketing fluff. 
    - For family protection - yes you can use it to block access for devices during time periods (though if the phone has private MAC turned on that no longer works well).  However, it is basically a brute force approach - simpler to say 'ok, it's dinner time -put your device in the dinner box - or it's 9 pm,  put your devices  away and enforce it. :)  - that is the retired Marine Gunnery Sergeant approach :)
    thomasmerz
  • 97engineers97engineers Member Posts: 4
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    I had this problem years ago when my kids were young and the net was much less sophisticated than it is now. I;m talking later 90’s and early 2000’s. What I ended up doing was buying a Frtigate firewall from Fortinet. It was a small one. The drawback was that it was capable of doing so much, it was complicated and a little tough to figure out. But, the stuff I wanted to do, web site filtering and shutting down access during certain hours were pretty straight forward, It worked very well for that. My kids hated it! I figure that was a good measure of its effectiveness. The devices can be had fairly cheaply now compared to then. As I said, you can control hours of internet access by days of the week. It has ready-made levels of site blocking in addition to which you can add specific sites to block. I always preferred this hardware approach to a software approach. For what its worth.


  • The_VorlonThe_Vorlon Member, Beta Tester Posts: 42
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    I had this problem years ago when my kids were young and the net was much less sophisticated than it is now. I;m talking later 90’s and early 2000’s. What I ended up doing was buying a Frtigate firewall from Fortinet. It was a small one. The drawback was that it was capable of doing so much, it was complicated and a little tough to figure out. But, the stuff I wanted to do, web site filtering and shutting down access during certain hours were pretty straight forward, It worked very well for that. My kids hated it! I figure that was a good measure of its effectiveness. The devices can be had fairly cheaply now compared to then. As I said, you can control hours of internet access by days of the week. It has ready-made levels of site blocking in addition to which you can add specific sites to block. I always preferred this hardware approach to a software approach. For what its worth.


    We are probably at about the same era of kids and internet access.  Our approach was simple - 'put your phone in the box, turn off the computer'  - and stick to it.  My wife and I took the approach of teaching responsibility - in thought and action.  Our mantra was 'we are not raising children, we are raising young adults - otherwise at 18 you have a large child'.   Everything went through a proxy server before it hit the 'net - and it was logged.  A couple of times a week I would check the log, anything that was 'not allowed' was flagged, and the individual was dealt with appropriately.  Our house was popular with friends because I had a 'game' network - 4 computers, a robust 50/25 mb (for the early 2000s) ISP link, and the boys could play Call of Duty as a group.   Everyone who wanted to play got their own windows domain account (yep network logins) and got the 'brief'  - don't do something you wouldn't want your mother to see.   There was one kid who thought he knew better -  decided to show his friends things - his parents got a copy of the proxy log and he was banned.  
    Really was never an issue in our house - 5 kids - all grown and out now 
    CiaranMarcthomasmerz
  • 97engineers97engineers Member Posts: 4
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    Our two had computers in their rooms which they needed for school work. I didn’t’t want them on my computer as I used it for work and didn’t want it messed up or infected by something they downloaded that got around the anti-virus. Having the Fortigate allowed me to do this and not worry they’d be on at it at all hours or getting to sites they shouldn’t. It, too, kept a log, so consequences were meted out. They had games they could have played like SIMS or Roller Coaster Tycoon (We did not allow shoot’em up games) but we never had a problem with those being played “after hours”.

    We knew many households with no such supervision and that really caused me to shake my head. I had been in IT since I graduated in 1979, so I knew what was out there. I guess they didn’t. I’m glad I’m not raising kids today. Too much stufff out there and social media is a mess.
    Marc
  • MarcMarc Moderator, Beta Tester Posts: 2,126
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    When mine were young, we gave them no smart phones that had data, just WiFi.  Used OpenDNS to lock down where they could go.  Had an extensive block list, plus used OpenDNS's built in filters.  It worked well on the 4 PC's we had running at the time. First time they got a message saying their site was blocked by Dad was priceless. I also had an Active Directory domain running, and assigned policy to their machine to lock down their ability to change things so they could not bypass my DNS assignments.  A bit overboard but I was doing AD engineering at the time and the software was easily obtainable.
    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
    thomasmerz
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