It’s easy with Safe Surfer to install an effective porn blocker on an Apple Mac device. Along with protecting your privacy, we also use our own behind-the-scenes technology to block porn and other harmful online content. This guide will efficiently walk you through how to install protection.

First off, we recommend that you check to see if the Apple device you’re protecting is running at least macOS 11 Big Sur. Not sure? You can check by clicking the Apple icon at the upper-left corner > About this Mac.

If you are stuck on macOS 10.14 Mojave, you may need to update old apps to a 64-bit version so that you can upgrade macOS. For example, Microsoft Office apps (like Word) might need to be updated through the Microsoft AutoUpdate application. Click this link to learn more about updating old apps, and click this link to learn how to upgrade to the latest version of macOS.

Step 1: Change important user account settings

We need to ensure that the Mac user account your child uses will have only standard-level permissions on this device. This means that once we’ve finished setting up protection they will not be able to remove the filter installation without the password of a device administrator (being you). We will briefly go through the steps to make a new administrator account, then we will set the account your child uses to have standard-level permissions.

Click System Preferences (the cog icon on the dock) > Users & Groups > click the lock icon and provide credentials as requested.

Click the “+” button at the lower-left corner of the window. Fill in the fields to make a user account called “Admin” with administrator-level permissions. Once you’ve made the user account, click the lock icon.

Log out of the current user (click the Apple logo at the upper-left corner > Log Out) and log in to the Admin user. Click System Preferences > Users & Groups > click the lock icon and provide credentials > select your child’s account > untick the “Allow user to administer this computer” checkbox > click the lock icon. You can now close out of the System Preferences app.

Step 2: Install protection

Click the Safari app on the dock.

Visit the Safe Surfer dashboard and log in to your account. Click the Devices menu on the left-hand sidebar.

Click the “+ New Device” button.

Click “This device”.

Click “Apply filter settings”.

Enter a name for the device you are protecting, then click the Accept button.

Click the “Download” button.

Click the Allow button.

In the Downloads prompt box, click the small search icon found next to “Safe Surfer.mobileconfig”.

In the Downloads folder, double-click the “Safe Surfer.mobileconfig” file.

macOS will inform you that the filter profile is available for installation in System Preferences.

Click the System Preferences app on the dock.

Click the Profiles menu at the lower-right corner of the System Preferences window.

On the Safe Surfer profile listing, click the Install button at the upper-right corner. The profile will be unsigned, but this can be ignored as it has been downloaded from our official dashboard website.

When macOS asks for your permission to install the profile, click the Install button.

Enter the credentials belonging to the Admin user account. The filter profile should now be installed system-wide.

If you use the Google Chrome app on this Mac, we need to change a setting so that the protection installation works correctly in Chrome. Before performing the following steps, fully quit the Chrome app by opening it up, then click Google Chrome > Quit on the menu bar (at the top of the screen).

Click the Spotlight (magnifying glass) icon at the upper-right corner of the screen and type “terminal”. Open the Terminal app. Copy the following text:

defaults write BuiltInDnsClientEnabled -bool false

Back in the terminal window, click Edit > Paste on the menu bar (at the top of the screen). Press the Enter key to execute the command. You can now close out of Terminal.

Step 3: Finalise protection

To configure blocked sites for this device, click this link to go to the dashboard again. Click the Blocking menu on the left-hand sidebar. Click the blue bubble list, then select the applicable Apple Mac device. You can now browse through our list of categories and select ones that you wish to block. Click the Save button at the upper-right corner of the page once you’re done. Log out of the Safe Surfer dashboard by clicking the three-dot button (at the upper-right corner) > Log out.

You might like to restart the device if you wish to immediately apply any filter changes that you may have made. These changes would otherwise take approximately 5–10 minutes to be made effective.

Verify that the filter installation is working by visiting This is a safe website designated for testing if pornographic sites are being blocked. This site should be blocked.

If you didn’t restart the device earlier, you can now sign out of the Admin user by clicking the Start Menu button > user icon (at the lower-left corner) > Sign out.

Protection complete

Great work! This device is now fully protected. To start monitoring protected devices, visit our easy-to-use online dashboard.

If you ever need to uninstall protection, simply delete the Safe Surfer profile in System Preferences > Profiles > “Safe Surfer” listing > click the “–” button to remove. As previously demonstrated, these changes can only be made by user accounts that hold administrator permissions on this device.

If you have any other Apple Mac devices you would like to protect, simply start again from the top of the guide. If you would like to protect a different kind of device, visit our Guides page.

Disclaimer: Safe Surfer Limited is in no way associated with Apple Inc.