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The Dangers Of Posting Your Children On Social Media

The Dangers Of Posting Your Children On Social Media

Content creation and sharing different parts of our lives on social media has become the norm. There’s an urge to share what you wear, celebrations and even intimate details about your parenting journey. However, some risks come with posting your children online.

Knowing how to safeguard your children when navigating your digital life is essential. Read on to find out more about how to post your children online and the risks they may be exposed to when you decide to.

The Risks of Posting Your Child on Social Media

Risk of Identity Theft

When you post your child’s photos, you are more likely to unwillingly share confidential information, such as their age and location. However, multiple data breaches resulting from cyber security threats across the dark web can risk your child’s identity. Most importantly, it can increase digital kidnapping when a stranger steals their photo and leads you to believe they’re in danger so you can pay a ransom.

You Lose Ownership of the Photos

Did you know that social media platforms own the content you share on your profile? Various terms and conditions include provisions that give the site owners unlimited rights to what is shared, including your child’s photos. This means they can use these photos whenever and however they see fit.

Other People Use the Photos

Besides losing ownership to site owners, you still have to deal with the consequences of strangers reusing your child’s photos even after deleting them. Even if your social media account has specific privacy settings, your followers can take screenshots and share images with a larger audience. Photos can be shared and misused without your knowledge or control.

Lack of Privacy

While posting special moments of your child’s milestones may not seem harmful, you should reconsider. Once their photos are online, they are vulnerable to potential threats, and anyone can access them. For example, you might post your child in their school uniform and not realise that it’s creating a trail for perpetrators to abduct or attack them.

Risks of Sexual Exploitation

Did you know that there are predators who spend their time looking for children and teenagers they can exploit for sexual and violent purposes? Research suggests that online predators use fake profiles to identify their victims and to groom them. Posting photos of your child online can compromise their safety from the increased risk of sexual exploitation.

Emotional Harm

Despite your good intentions when you post your children online, you should understand that they might still be embarrassed by what you share. In other cases, their peers can use your content to mock them, leading to potential bullying. Posting on social media can lead to harmful real-life consequences that can affect your child in extremely personal ways.

The Impact of Social Media on Your Child

Although social media may positively affect children, it’s crucial to note that these platforms have drastically changed communication and social connections. Additionally, there are various ways that others can misuse them and jeopardise the safety of your loved ones. These are the common negative effects of exposing your child to social media:

  • The increased risk of being a cyberbully victim.
  • Being exposed to harmful viral trends.
  • Anxiety and stress from increased social media consumption.
  • The negative comments can raise body image concerns.
  • The potential dangers posed by online predators.

Tips to Safely Share Photos of Your Child Online

Social media can enhance communication, interactions, and community through shared content when used correctly. It’s crucial to know how digital platforms function, improve your privacy settings and protect your children from the potential dangers of sharing their photos. Here are some tips that can help you share pictures of your child online:

  • If your child is older and understands social media, you should ask for content and allow them to control what is shared to ensure they’re comfortable.
  • Read the fine print on social media platforms to improve your knowledge of the terms and conditions and avoid potential drawbacks.
  • Analyse every image you wish to share to ensure that it doesn’t contain sensitive information that perpetrators can use to track your child’s location.
  • Consider using other means outside social media to share precious moments with your loved ones who live far away.
  • Try to use the strictest privacy settings on your social media platforms to reduce the risk of exposing your child to strangers who can exploit your child’s photos.

Deciding to share photos of your child on social media can be challenging, especially when you always want to ensure their privacy and safety remain a priority. If you fear the risks that can follow posting your child online, you should stay connected to emergency services 24/7 with the FREE iER App. You can access Social Services and Child Protection if there are potential threats from cyberbullies or online predators.

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