True North Networks Blog
Could the Photos You’re Sharing Online Be Putting Your Child at Risk?
As a parent, you’ve equipped their phones, tablets, and laptops with security software and increased safeguards on devices throughout your home. These efforts go a long way in protecting your family’s privacy from prying eyes. Unfortunately, many parents are part of the problem when it comes down to communicating and sharing photos online of your kids.
Can you relate?
- 30% of parents post a photo of their child to social media daily.
- 58% of parents do not ask for permission from their children before posting images of them on social media.
- 22% think that their child is too young to provide permission; 19% claim that it’s their own choice, not their child’s choice.
The surprising part:
- 71% of parents who share images of their kids online agree that the images could end up in the wrong hands.
- Parents’ biggest concerns with sharing photos online include pedophilia (49%), stalking (48%), and kidnapping (45%).
- Other risks of sharing photos online may also be other children seeing the image and engaging in cyberbullying (31%), their child feeling embarrassed (30%), and their child feeling worried or anxious (23%).
Together, we can dilute the risks of photo sharing, agree to post smarter, and to pause a little longer. We can look out for one another’s privacy, and share in ways that keep us all safe:
Ways to help minimize photo sharing risks:
- Pause before uploading. Ask yourself: Is there anything in this photo that could be used as an identifier? Have I inadvertently given away personal information such as a birthdate, a visible home addresses, a school uniform, financial details, or potential passwords? Is the photo I’m about to upload something I’d be okay with a stranger seeing?
- Review your privacy settings. You can minimize the scope of your audience to only trusted friends and family by customizing your privacy settings within each social network. Use the controls available to boost your family privacy.
- Voice your sharing preferences with others. While it may be awkward, it’s okay to request friends and family to reign in or refrain from posting photos of your children online. This rule also applies to other people’s public comments about your vacation plans, new house, children’s names or birthdates, or any other content that gives away too much data. Don’t hesitate to promptly delete those comments by others and explain yourself in a private message if necessary.
- Turn off geotagging on photos. Many social networks will tag a user’s location when that user uploads a photo. To make sure this doesn’t happen, simply turn off geotagging abilities on your phone. This precaution is particularly important when posting photos away from home.
- Be mindful of identity theft. Identity theft is no joke. Consider using an identity theft protection solution that can help protect your identity and safeguard your personal information.