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Best Employee Monitoring Software for Content Filtering: ContentProtect Review

Employee monitoring software is often considered for its activity monitoring features – those aspects which allow administrators to watch and review user behavior and productivity on company time. But employee monitoring software often serves other purposes as well, including filtering web content that isn't necessary, appropriate or safe for the workplace.

ContentProtect is our best pick for employee monitoring software for content filtering, because its tools are uniquely positioned to give administrators a great deal of control over which content is flagged as potentially problematic and which is blocked outright. It is a very easy system to learn and use, and it allows a dynamic approach to content filtering that gives admins the ability to respond to new information and policy changes on a dime.

ContentProtect Pro requires at least five users, at a rate of $39.99 per seat. That means ContentProtect Pro would cost $199.95 a month for the bare minimum; however, a discount was in effect when we researched ContentProtect, bringing the total down to $174.99. The pricing for ContentProtect Pro is on the high end for employee monitoring software in our review. Still, it provides a quality slate of features and gives admins full control and insight into the way their employees navigate the internet during the workday.

ContentProtect Pro offers a variety of features and tools that make it easy for admins to filter web content and monitor employee behavior for any violations or attempted workarounds. These tools include content filters, internet usage policies for all devices, web-based administration and reporting, productivity tools with custom rules and time controls, email alerts for policy violations or filter change requests, and custom policy settings and rules.

Admins begin the process by creating a list of all the users who will be monitored by the software. Creating a new user only takes a few clicks. Once created, new users can be added to groups, letting admins easily sort employees by department or working group.

The Filter Control tab is where you can set restrictions at a user, group or organization-wide level. These restrictions can apply to web content under a broad category, a specific website, or even keywords and phrases. Content can be set to "allow," "warn" or "block." There are 18 categories that you can regulate, which include topics like weapons, drugs, nudity and alcohol.

You can also block individual websites that don't fall under one of the restricted categories by manually adding them to a list of prohibited content. Likewise, a website that falls under a restricted category but is necessary for work can be manually added to an "always allow" list. Employees can also send requests for access to prohibited content, and the admin can determine whether the employee needs to access the page in question.

Notifications are an important part of ContentProtect. You can set custom notifications and alerts that are triggered by specific actions. For example, admins could create a notification that would be triggered if an employee continues to browse restricted content after receiving a warning. Similarly, alerts can be set up for when an employee tries to circumvent blocked content in any way. There are many possible combinations of notifications, allowing your organization room to create more internal enforcement mechanisms or to be more forgiving, depending on your preference.

ContentProtect is highly navigable software that is easy to learn by simply clicking around and exploring. Tabs are neatly laid out to make it clear where tools are, but even when it takes a moment to find something (we initially had trouble finding the option to add a user), it remains intuitive overall. Some of the finer details take a bit more time to learn, but most users should feel accustomed to the system within an hour.

ContentProtect doesn't have the most aesthetically pleasing user interface, but it's not outdated either. It is simple, effective and uncluttered. There aren't many bells and whistles, but that's a welcome aspect for what ContentProtect is: It's focused on content filtering. Instead of trying to be all things to all people, ContentProtect is very competent content-filtering software that can fit in nicely with a larger employee monitoring strategy.

With ContentProtect, admins can generate real-time reports to monitor employee usage at both the individual and organizational levels. These reports aren't highly sophisticated, but they still highlight the content-filtering aspects of employee monitoring, which is ContentProtect's focus.

The reports show the various prohibited categories or trigger warnings and how many attempts users have made to access that content. A bar graph depicts how many blocked or denied user actions were attempted. A search report shows the web searches your users are conducting. There is also a detailed report that shows the last 10 sites users visited, along with a live feed, usernames, the actions they performed on the sites, the categories those sites fall under, the devices used to access the sites, and the date and time of each.

ContentProtect's reports give admins a great bird's-eye view of what their employees are up to, but for detailed real-time information, it's best to use the notification features. The combined functions of reports and notifications give you the greatest level of insight into employee activity and potential violations of company policy.            

ContentProtect gives you plenty of support options. The company offers a phone number for quick answers, as well as an email address where you can send your concerns and wait for a reply. This content filter software also has an abundant knowledgebase with more than 380 answered questions. In addition, you can review current product manuals as well as older documentation.

ContentProtect's biggest downside is its price. It's not excessive, but it is high considering ContentProtect is only content-filtering software. If you can afford it, ContentProtect is an excellent solution with the power to back up its price, but it's hard to ignore that one license costs about the same as some of the most comprehensive employee monitoring software on the market. Still, if you have the budget and don't want to cut corners on content filtering, you'll definitely get your money's worth.

Ready to choose an employee monitoring software solution? Check out the rest of our coverage:

Adam C. Uzialko

Adam C. Uzialko, a New Jersey native, graduated from Rutgers University in 2014 with a degree in Political Science and Journalism & Media Studies. In addition to his full-time position at Business News Daily and Business.com, Adam freelances for a variety of outlets. An indispensable ally of the feline race, Adam is owned by four lovely cats.