How to block websites on any browser

website blocking

The internet is an essential part of modern life and, for the most part, that’s a positive thought. However, this 24/7 connected world in which we live today also comes with its fair share of distractions.

Here we look at how you can block websites that may interrupt your workflow.

Why Should You Consider Blocking Websites

There are many reasons why one should consider blocking websites but, more importantly, it’s a conscious act to achieve the following:

  • Maintaining focus
  • Removing distractions
  • Boosting productivity
  • Improving performance
  • Goal achievement
  • Better time management
  • Ensuring cybersecurity by blocking infected sites
  • Keeping explicit websites at bay
  • Protecting personal information
  • Protecting children from explicit/violent/predatory content

Can You Block Websites Directly from the Browser?

Most popular browsers do not come with an in-built site blocker, so you can’t really use the browser alone to block offensive or distracting sites. What you can do, however, is install a simple extension called BlockSite on your browser and it will instantly solve that issue.

Their official website explains how to block a website on all browsers with the powerful extension, along with blocking corresponding apps, preventing adult content from showing up, and even password protecting the browser. It’s a single extension/application to eliminate distractions, maintain your privacy online, and manage blocked websites so that you can concentrate on the actual work/study, instead of wasting time on the management.

Can You Block Any Website from Your Computer?

Although it’s much more convenient to just manage your distractions and cyber safety measures with a simple extension, there are other ways to block websites directly from the computer. However, you will need to manually block and unblock all of those websites on each of your devices separately. Also, host file methods do not work on sites that begin with https://, instead of the more unsecure http://.

Blocking Websites on a PC (Windows 10)

  • Click on the Control Panel or find it from the search menu
  • Select User Accounts and Family Security and then go to the Family Safety setting for that User
  • Select it and turn On, enforce current setting
  • Select Web Filtering > Users can only use the websites I allow > Allow or block specific websites
  • Enter all websites you wish to block the user from, by pasting or typing in the URL under the heading Enter a website to allow or block

Although this process is complicated, time-consuming and mostly manual, it should effectively block every website entered, from the account of the user on that particular Windows 10 PC

Blocking Websites on a Mac

Admittedly, Apple’s computers are safer than PCs due to MacOS’s closed and secured design, but it isn’t exactly malware proof either. Besides, blocking off websites without an extension can actually be more complicated to achieve on a Mac than it is on Windows 10.

  • Click on the Apple logo on your top-left screen
  • Follow the path from System Preferences > Parental Controls
  • Select the target User Account on your left, and then click on Web on your right
  • It’s better to select the tab Try to limit access to adult websites and then select Customize
  • Create a blocklist by adding (+) the restricted sites under Never allow these websites > OK
  • Alternately, you can select Allow access to only these websites, and enter the websites you will allow
  • If you do that, the user will not be able to visit ANY website outside the ones you entered on the green list

As one can imagine, with the help of parental controls or browser extensions, temporarily/permanently blocking websites with distracting/malicious/explicit content is possible, but the former is a lot more complex, time-consuming and less effective than the latter. After all, there are millions of websites to watch out for on the internet, and your block list cannot possibly include them all. Extensions, on the other hand, work in real-time, offer better protection and make it possible to be productive without wasting time on websites, or the very act of blocking them!