Parents are being urged to think carefully before posting back to school photos online, warning the images could be used by predators for grooming or creating child exploitation material.
While many parents share images of their kids’ first day on social media, the Australian Federal Police says parents and carers need to take precautions before uploading any images of their children in their school uniforms.
“We have seen instances of otherwise innocent images being used in child exploitation material or offenders using information from photos, such as school uniforms, to identify and groom children,” Commander Schneider said.
“While these incidents are rare, they do happen, which is why we are urging families to be proactive with online safety and keep their information safe as the 2024 school year gets underway.
“We are urging parents and carers to do a quick privacy check on their social media platforms before they post their back-to-school photos to add another layer of security.
“Parents can also easily edit the logos of their children’s uniforms to conceal where they attend school as an extra precaution.”
Here’s what you can do to check your privacy:
- Checking your privacy settings and making sure your social media accounts are secure and set to private or ‘friends only’
- Checking the privacy settings on the device you are using
- If another person is taking photos of your child, having a discussion around how the photos will be used and how they will be shared
- Ensuring the background doesn’t give away your address or location. Don’t post your location or ‘check in’
- Keeping your child’s uniform logo hidden
- Keeping your child’s personal information including full name and age private.
ThinkUKnow has also released a quick reference guide to help parents tighten the security around their social media posts.We may get commissions for purchases made using links in this post. Learn more.