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SocialShield Improves Capabilities For Monitoring Social Network Usage

SocialShield's release supports the newly launched Google+ social network
SAN BRUNO, Calif., Oct. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- SocialShield (www.socialshield.com), the leading online monitoring service for kids' social networking activities, today announced significant upgrades to its product, allowing parents to more easily and effectively protect their children on Facebook, Twitter, Formspring and other social networks, now including Google+. SocialShield has distinguished itself by developing the industry's most advanced scanning and analysis technologies along with easy-to-understand reports that inform parents about concerning activity and potential dangers their kids might face -- contact by strangers, cyberbullying, revealing their physical location and reputation damaging posts. With this release parents have even more control, easier access to data, and greater sophistication in identifying questionable events or activities.

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"The Social Web can be a dangerous place for kids today, and as engagement and sophistication increase it's impossible for parents to monitor every activity," said George Garrick, CEO of SocialShield. "Just last week MTV and the Associated Press released results from a research study where 56% of teens admitted to being cyberbullied. Parents need a simple yet comprehensive solution to know when their kids are at risk of things like cyberbullying, online predators and damaging their reputation. Our product gives them the tools they need to quickly and easily assess each incident. We are very proud of this latest release because it's a big step forward for parents and the entire social networking industry."

SocialShield's technology identifies questionable and potentially dangerous, illicit or inappropriate social networking activities, then alerts a child's parent to items that may need to be addressed. With the child's approval, SocialShield tracks social network activity such as, friend requests, wall posts, photos, videos, group messages, event posts, and others in order to identify the items that parents need to be aware of.

New features include:

-- Google+ Support: SocialShield's release supports the newly launched Google+ social network. Similar to the other social networks that SocialShield supports, the service reports on all friends, activities and alerts so parents can easily understand what's going on without needing to be experts in social networking. The Google+ integration is available at no additional charge to SocialShield customers. -- Updated Dashboard and Interface: The newly designed interface makes it easier and faster than ever for parents to identify hazardous situations or risky behaviors no matter where they take place. All social networks appear in one main dashboard, for instance, and users can simply mouse over certain words to get a definition of what the term refers to and why it was flagged as potentially dangerous. -- New Flagging System: Parents can quickly and easily see, in reverse chronological order, all items that they have been alerted to by SocialShield for their review, then drill-down to investigate these items further before either dismissing them or saving to be addressed later. The easy-to-read "alert level" meter summarizes the overall risk for the activity within the child's social circle so parents can instantly see if there is cause for concern. -- Updated Alert Settings: SocialShield's monitoring covers 10 different categories ranging from stranger analysis to cyberbullying. For each area, the parent can specify how important it is for their child given their age. For instance, the parents of an older child might decide they want to be alerted right away to items related to sex and drugs, but references to cyberbullying and profanity may be less of an issue so they can select to have less alerts for those categories. -- Improved Algorithms: SocialShield's patent-pending algorithms are now more powerful, tracking and analyzing millions of data points every second and flagging at-risk items with fewer false positives. The algorithm behind SocialShield's post analysis continues to expand in sophistication as it continuously processes online activity within the child's social circle and detects more variations of concerning phrases while learning to skip a greater amount of acceptable phrases.

"This latest evolution of the product is the culmination of more than two years of continuous refinement to the user interface as well as the robust technology that sits behind it," said Torben Mottes, vice president of products at SocialShield. "The challenge for parents is that there are so many activities taking place every second on the Social Web and you have to scan them all and be able to accurately determine which ones could be dangerous. That's where our algorithms keep getting more advanced. We also listened to the feedback of our customers and implemented many of their suggestions, which definitely helped make the product extremely easy to use."

Pricing and Availability

SocialShield's new release is available via subscription and can be purchased from the SocialShield web site for $10 per month or $96 per year if paid annually. Customers will be able to generate a complete historical report of their child's social networking activities and current risk levels immediately upon activating their account.

About SocialShield

SocialShield is the leading cloud-based social network monitoring service. SocialShield gives parents affordable, easy-to-use, state-of-the-art tools to help them enhance Internet safety for their children in the online environment. The patent-pending SocialShield technology alerts parents of questionable activity on their child's social network accounts so they can feel comfortable about who their children interact with online, what photos and conversations are being posted, and where children have profiles. Yet, by operating primarily as an "exception reporting" technology, children can still use these networks with a feeling of privacy and independence. Based in San Bruno, CA, SocialShield is backed by USVP and Venrock as well as several notable private investors. For more, visit www.socialshield.com.