To effectively monitor web activity, most users will turn to the software packages available on the market. While many of these packages are effective, there is an element of risk associated with their reliability and defeat-ability. This is where hardware monitoring tools become extremely effective.
For parents looking to monitor their tech savvy children on the Internet, a hardware monitoring device is the definite choice. This is due to the fact that hardware monitoring devices cannot be "hacked" and do not have the vulnerability of a password being guessed or cracked in order to defeat it.
The main type of hardware monitoring device is known as a key logger. This is a small USB device that plugs in between the keyboard and the PC. As the user type information into the keyboard, every key stroke is stored as text within the USB device. The USBdevice can be reviewed by removing it from between the keyboard and PC and plugging it into a USB port to access the contents. The second type is a specialized keyboard that functions the same as the USB device.
The information from the key logger will provide the person monitoring with account passwords, websites visited, chat history, email content and other tidbits of information. This method ensures all information is recorded without the risk of the device being defeated, short of it being physically removed by the target.