Our newest version of our Android™ app, released today, includes the ability to lock down other apps.
In our initial plans for this app we stated we wanted to provide app locking. That feature has now arrived.
How app locking works
After upgrading your app, or downloading it for the first time, click on the Covenant Eyes icon. You’ll see a button, “Enable App Locking.” After pressing this button, you’ll be asked to create a four-digit passcode. If you are protecting yourself on the device, we recommend you choose someone you trust to set this code for you (like your Accountability Partner). If you are protecting your kids, set this code yourself.
You’ll then come to a list of apps installed on your device. Lock all the apps you want to lock by toggling the switches to the “lock” position.
If someone tries opening a locked app, the passcode will be required.
Remember to re-lock apps you override
If you override a locked app with your four-digit passcode, the app will stay unlocked until you re-lock it in your Covenant Eyes App Lock Settings. If you don’t want it to remain unlocked, remember to re-lock it.
What apps should you lock?
You can lock down any apps you want, but we recommend locking down any apps that could serve as a back door to inappropriate content.
- Google Play – This one is very important to lock down. By leaving this unlocked, users have complete access to any new apps from the Play store, including unmonitored browsers.
- Unmonitored browsers – Currently Covenant Eyes only monitors the websites visited on the stock browser (different for each device). All other browsers are unmonitored and should be blocked.
- Some social media apps – Social media apps can be littered with mature content. This could include Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Facebook, and others. Parents should use discretion when allowing kids to use social media.
- Messenger and chat services – Parents may not want chatting features unlocked. It depends who your child is chatting with. Apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, LINE, Hangouts, ChatON, Tango Messenger, Kik Messenger, SnapChat, and Skype are popular.
It is best to do a review of the apps on your device and see what each app does and what it accesses.
We still monitor the apps that are used
The Covenant Eyes app still monitors the apps that are used and the amount of time they are used. Even if you choose not to lock down specific apps, any apps you attempt to open will still appear on Accountability Reports.
We do not monitor how other apps are used (the content that is accessed through the apps), only that the apps were opened and used for a certain length of time.