How to Set Up Parental Controls on a PlayStation 3
- What ESRB ratings are.
- What can be restricted using parental controls.
- How parental controls may impact your experience.
- Setting up a parental controls password.
- How to access restricted content.
- How to configure the different types of parental controls.
- Have access to your PlayStation 3.
1 ESRB Ratings
The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) ratings provide guidance about video games and apps so that you can make informed choices about the ones you deem suitable for your family.
Parts of ESRB Ratings
- Rating Categories suggest age appropriateness.
- Content Descriptors indicate content that may have triggered a particular rating and/or may be of interest or concern.
- Interactive Elements highlight interactive or online features of a product, including users' ability to interact with each other, the sharing of users' location with other users, if purchases of digital goods or services are offered, and/or if unrestricted internet access is provided.
You can find the ESRB ratings on the front of physical games, with the content descriptor on the back.
A small logo will be printed on the front of the game box, or prominently in the online store for the game.
On the back of the box, a more expanded list of information about the rating, and a small list of why the rating was given is shown.
The primary information is repeated, here, just like the logo on the front. To the right, further information detailing what, exactly, gave it that rating. This is so you can make a more informed decision for your child.
2 About Parental Controls
What Can Parental Controls Restrict?
Your PlayStation 3 has access to Parental Control settings which can be used to restrict access to the device and certain content. The following things can be restricted:
No parental control system is 100% perfect. The best solution is active, engaged parenting; working with your child to ensure they develop good habits through your instruction and guidance.
How Are Parental Control Restrictions Enforced?
The Parental control restrictions you choose are put into place across the entire game console, and cannot be set to only affect a single or specific user account. Therefore, if your PlayStation 3 has multiple user accounts, they will all end up being restricted in the same way. When a user encounters a parental control restriction, they are prompted to enter a password. Without this password, they cannot proceed.
Because this is the case, you should always set parental control restrictions with the youngest user of your PlayStation 3 console in mind.
- There are 1 adult and 2 children in the home who will all be using the console
- The children are ages 9 and 15
In this case, you would want to configure parental control restrictions based upon what content you would be comfortable with the 9 year old having access to. These settings would then also apply to all the other users on the PlayStation 3. The password that will be set on your PlayStation 3 can be used to bypass parental control restrictions.
3 Set/Change Password
Setting a password on your PlayStation 3 is necessary to protect it from unwanted adjustments to system settings. This password is also used to lock out users from accessing restricted content that has been blocked via parental control settings.
This is a master password that will be used across all of the user accounts on your PlayStation 3 console. There is no way to set specific passwords for individual user accounts.
To Set a Password for Your PlayStation 3
- Select Settings and then Security Settings.
- Select Change Password.
- Enter your old password.
The default password to setup parental controls is 0000. If this does not work, or you have forgotten your PS3 password, choose Settings > System Settings > Restore Default Settings to reset the password to 0000.
- Choose a new password.
- Select Yes to confirm your password change.
- You will receive a prompt that your password was updated.
4 Bypassing Content Restrictions
Can Parental Controls Be Bypassed?
Yes, parental controls can be bypassed easily. The password that was set on your PlayStation 3 acts as a sort of gatekeeper. It prevents unwanted adjustments to system settings and locks out users from accessing restricted content that has been blocked via parental control settings. Any time a user attempts to alter system settings, or encounters content that is blocked by your parental control settings, the user will be prompted for this password. Inputting the password successfully bypasses an individual restriction that was encountered by the user.
Because there is only one password for the entire console, be careful of making the password common knowledge throughout your home. If the password becomes common knowledge, this will make your restrictions ineffective. Periodically changing your console's password may be necessary depending on your household situation.