Internet filters (also called web filters or content control software) are a highly specialized type of software that prevents internet users from accessing certain websites or content online. Like a lot of specialized software, plenty of people use internet filters, but certain demographics tend to make up the target audience. So who usually ends up buying internet filtering software?

Who is the Audience For Internet Filtering Software?

While there is no shortage of different people who use internet filters, there are four major customer bases for this type of software: parents, businesses, schools/libraries, and people struggling with porn addiction. Each has its own specific reason for using internet filters, but all of them stem from the same general purpose: to protect someone from harmful and inappropriate content.


The reasons parents would be interested in internet filtering software should be obvious: with so much inappropriate and offensive content freely available online, it is important to take precautions to keep kids safe. Along with protections to keep people away from obviously fraudulent and virus-ridden parts of the internet, internet filters can be tailored to restrict specific types of content, such as pornography and violent media. So not only is it a general filter for blocking out harmful content but it can be personalized as needed to address specific types of content that parents find disagreeable.

Business Leaders

For businesses, there are two primary reasons for using internet filtering software. Firstly, internet filtering is arguably the most effective way for businesses to reduce the threat of viruses and malware. In the best-case scenario, malware can be a nuisance that ends up freezing day-to-day operations, rendering computers unusable, and forcing people to spend time fixing the problem rather than focusing on their work. In the worst-case scenario, malware can steal or delete important data or shut down vital systems within a company, with ransomware forcing companies to pay a fee to regain access. Internet filtering nips the problem in the bud by preventing users from accessing websites that are known for harboring malware and viruses.

Along with serving as a security measure, internet filtering software can also be used by business leaders to prevent employees from accessing websites that aren’t related to work. Some find this a bit excessive, but the ease of access offered by the internet means that its easy to get caught up in checking social media, scrolling videos, or playing online games rather than focusing on the work in front of you. Internet filters eliminate the temptation, while still ensuring that you have access to the websites you need for work.

Schools & Libraries

The reason that schools and libraries often invest in internet filtering software is a bit of a combination of what drives parents and businesses to do so. On the one hand, schools and libraries play an important part in many children’s lives, so they must do what they can to educate and protect them. They have an obligation to protect their students’ mental and physical well-being, which means taking actions to prevent access to potentially harmful content. Like a business though, they also need to keep their systems free of viruses and malware, not only for the sake of individual students but for the entire organization as well.

Struggling Porn Addicts

This is arguably the newest demographic among buyers of internet filtering software, but it is steadily growing as well. Porn addiction is a serious problem for many people, even those with strong religious convictions. Even if you want to quit, it can be difficult to cut yourself from pornography, especially since the internet has made it so readily available. To address this, some people who are trying to eliminate porn from their lives purchase software to avoid letting temptation get a hold of them.

Breaking habits isn’t easy, and self-discipline is something that can take time to build, so having an internet filter in place is a good way to build up the habit. Obviously, a single piece of software isn’t enough to correct your life, but it can make the process a little easier. Think of an internet filter as an accountability partner, something you have to face when you’re feeling weak.

Keep In Mind…

While these are the four biggest demographics for internet filtering software, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t others who could benefit from it. Internet filtering allows for a tremendous degree of security and control over what goes in or out of a network, giving it several practical applications. An internet filter might be especially well suited to protecting kids or keeping employees productive, but if any of its features seem worthwhile, then you should absolutely consider investing.