It's that time of year again: across the country parents are waving goodbye to their kids as they hop on the school bus for another year of learning.
For many families, taking a back-to-school photo at this time of year is an annual tradition, either showing the kids' excited faces or their gloomy expressions as they head back to class. This year, parents have even been poking fun at the trend with some very silly pictures.
But safety experts are warning parents to think before they share these photos, because they could be putting their children at risk. Online safety organization Enough is Enough says parents don't realize how much private information these photos can reveal.
Some parents have been including their child's name, their school, and even the clubs or activities they participate in on social media. Combined with a back-to-school photo, safety experts worry this info could make children targets for predators.
If you do plan on sharing a back-to-school photo this year, make sure to follow some crucial safety tips...
Photos posted on Facebook or Twitter can accidentally be shared with strangers, but with a little foresight you can protect your family by following these tips:
- Be careful about including the name of your child's school, its logo or a photo of the building on social media.
- Also be wary of sharing street names or addresses in your posts.
- Change your privacy settings so only friends and relatives can see you posts.
- Turn off "geo-tagging" features, which reveal where your photo was taken.
- Ask other children's parents before sharing photos that include them on social media.
Experts say that you should always assume that any information you put online will be shared publicly, because that will teach you to limit what you reveal.
Also, be sure to share this warning with other parents, so their children will be safe too.
Share this warning with other parents!