About the author, Chris McKenna

Chris is the Covenant Eyes Educational Resource Manager. Chris has a BA in Accountancy and Spanish from Western Michigan University. After 12 years in business advising with Ernst & Young, God led Chris to a full-time student ministry role. He started protectyoungeyes.com in 2015  as a ministry to equip and educate parents and teens on the latest gadgets, apps, and how to use the Internet well, which led him to Covenant Eyes. God works in unexpected ways!

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31 thoughts on “FAQs: iPhone Accountability and Filtering with Covenant Eyes

  1. The app for iOS has been great. My main request would be that it reported search terms, if this is technically possible. But, the fact that it enforces Safe Search is a great help.

  2. i have continuously read about the accountability on a mobile phone can it b used via a smart phone .i caught my husband about q8 months ago viewing porn and i cannot get over it i was feeling a little better before xmas 2017 and knowing his basic phone was almost useless bought him a smart phone to use sith bis bloothtooth excercise machine i regret this so much and the little trust i had regained has vone he may not b doing anything wrong but i dont know .he never puts the phone down i xo take it from him when we retire at night but things are very serious between us .he makes out that i need to see a sychiatrist and i go on at him because i do not trust him .ive told him to leave and that causes probldms but everythings turned on me becausei cant let it go .i want to but do not want to be made a fool of . Thankyou

    • I would think that if there’s nothing wrong with his phone, then you should be able to view the history at any time for your own reassurance. That should be a basic trust-building exercise that he should be willing to undertake: all of his internet activity should be an open book to you, no questions asked. You don’t need to see a psychiatrist about that. He should be willing to open the books for you at any time, given his past behavior.

      Here, here, and here are some articles about boundaries, and here’s one about trust that might be helpful as you think things through.

  3. Hello,
    My name is Orion and I love this service you have provided, but I would like to make a suggestion. I use Apple devices and they have this wonderful feature where you can save your password for websites and apps to your device and have it auto fill when you visit that website when you use Safari. However, this feature is unavailable on the Covenant Eyes app. Would it be possible for this feature to be added, or is it already available, and if so how do you set it up?
    Thank you for everything you are doing,
    Orion Maki

    • Hello, Orion – thank you for this suggestion. I’ve sent it to our development team for further consideration.
      Chris

  4. I got rid of my iPhone because the one thing that I could not restrict was when my phone connected to a guest WiFi hotspot. When I would accept the terms to connect, a window would open up for that location’s homepage (i.e. the Starbucks homepage), and I would then be able to navigate to google or youtube and beyond even though I had restricted everything. Does the new app monitor those hotspot windows?

    • Hello, yes, it would monitor domains that you access through the hotspots. If you click, it will be rated.
      Chris

    • Hello, Greg – are you trying to remove Covenant Eyes so that you can continue using Parentkit? If so, please contact customer service at 877-479-1119 and they can assist you.

      Chris

  5. So for the VPN on iOS. There is a way to get to the VPN section under “general” and go to the covenant eyes section and disable the “On Demand” command. This allows bypassing of the VPN to allow unrestricted access to the internet. Any way it can be set so the accountability partner can get some type of alert when the VPN is shut down? Or is the best way to just restrict all internet access to the Covenent Eyes app? Because then this would still let things like Twitter and Facebook to get through. thanks!

    • Hi, Steven – can you please make sure you have the latest version of the iOS app? We released a new one on 4/4. When the VPN is shut-off, it should be sending a notification to the Accountability Report.

      Regards, Chris

  6. If the Covenant eyes vpn isn’t on but the browser app is on my phone does that mean it is still monitoring the whole phone, (for all my apps?) If a different browser that isn’t google or bing is added, it will still be monitoring any usage with M rating right? I can’t use the VPN because it slows my phones connectivity very badly on wifi or not

    • Hi, Tim – the VPN is what does the monitoring. If you’ve disabled the VPN and still have the browser, then you’re not protected. If you had the VPN and clicked on a link in another browser, then the VPN would rate it, but without it, no.

      Chris

  7. My Iphone just updated to ios 11.3 and it’s been having a lot of trouble connecting to the internet because of covenant eyes. I know the problem is covenant eyes because when i turn off the vpn it takes a few seconds to force it back on and in those few seconds I’ve been able to reconnect. Are you guys aware of this issue and is there a fix?

    • Hi, Joe – I’m not aware of this issue, but our most recent update, released on 4/4, may help with this issue. Please update the CE app and let me know if the problem persists.

      Chris

  8. The VPN slows and stops connectivity on my apps and browser, even safe stuff. Is there any way to combat this? for example, twitter slows to a crawl, and no images will load at all.

    • Hi, Leon – that’s one that I haven’t heard of lately. Have you tried resetting the device? If that doesn’t work, would you mind contacting customer service? 877-479-1119.

      Thanks – Chris

  9. I generally haven’t used Covenant Eyes or other apps on my iPhone because of the lack of accountability. I was super excited when this VPN feature was released a few months ago but very quickly (within about 15 minutes) discovered how to turn it off in the iPhone Settings. A notification popped up warning me that I no longer had device wide accountability, and I surfed the net freely without anything report ever being sent to my accountability partner.

    If Covenant Eyes knows when the VPN is being turned off and can give me a notification, surely it can put that as a red flag in the accountability report, can’t it? Just like how generating an uninstall code would automatically alert my accountability partner. Having this capability would close what I see as a big cap in Covenant Eye’s iPhone monitoring capability.

    • Hi, Josh – the scenario you described should have sent a notification to your Accountability Report. Can you please call customer service to ensure you’re set up correctly? 877-479-1119

      Chris

  10. A friend of mine has CE on his iPhone, when he turns off the VPN after a few seconds it automatically comes back on. On mine it does not. How do I force my phone to use the VPN?

    • Hi, Ryan – after you add the CE VPN configuration, then click on VPN in Settings on your phone. You’ll see a little blue checkmark next to “Covenant Eyes” and a lower-case i for “information.” Click that lower-case i and make sure “Connect on Demand” is toggled on. If you’re still having trouble after trying that, please contact customer service at 877-479-1119. Thank you for being a CE member!

      Chris

  11. Should I expect that ALL of the web traffic that comes from iOS apps other than the CE browser will appear in the Detailed Browsing Log? Is there a difference in the way iOS CE browser traffic is reported and traffic that’s generated from other iOS apps…like News for instance?

    • Hi, Dan – yes, there is a difference. For traffic through the CE browser, you will see the exact address in the DBL. For traffic through an app other than the CE browser, you’ll see a combination of URLs that you understand, like “www.instagram.com,” and a bunch of addresses that don’t make sense, which is some of the encrypted chatter between the app and domain servers.

      Chris

    • Hi, Thomas – we’re definitely aware of this frustration with some of our users and are working on it to try and disconnect the VPN solution from the YouTube forced Restricted Mode. Please hang on! Thank you.

      Chris

  12. We are relocating out of the US for a tIme, and see the need for VPN service for security. Does the CE VPN provide security? Is it possible to use another VPN service at the same time as CE?

    • Hi, Corey – that CE VPN doesn’t not provide the security you’re looking for in a traditional VPN and ours cannot run at the same time as another. The world is definitely moving toward more privacy, so I completely understand your desire for a traditional VPN overseas. I’m sorry that we don’t have a solution at the moment.

      Chris

  13. I don’t seem to have the same problems as other with Youtube. Actually, I have the opposite. i’m wondering how I can actually keep the Youtube restricted setting on. All I need to do is shut off the wifi on my iphone 7+ and the option to remove the “restricted” setting on youtube is readily accessible.

    • Hi, Julio – it shouldn’t matter what you toggle off and on in the YouTube app. The CE VPN should still force the Restricted Mode regardless. If this is not proving true, can you please call customer service at 877-479-1119? Thank you.

      Chris

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