As the wave of social networking sites, such as Facebook continue to grow, more and more people post images of their family on these sites. I have posted pictures of my family on many social media sites to show family members and friends the daily adventures of our life. However, I recently learned the hard way that by posting these pictures online strangers can come into your family's life and invade your privacy, even your children's privacy. After this happens, it is very difficult, and often next to impossible, to repair the damage that was caused by simply posting pictures online.
There are many reasons why you should not post images of your family online. Most people know the dangers of pedophiles and the pictures falling into the hands of pedophiles. But in reality, this is actually a very small concern. There are other dangers,which occur far to often.
When you post pictures of your family online, anyone can download them and save them to their computer. It is not uncommon for these downloaded images to be used in media and marketing without the parents consent. The people who download the pictures claim them as their own, and even make a profit off of what could be your child's photo. The image is the distributed all over the world, falling into the hands of strangers.
Protecting Your Family
So, how can you protect your family? Well, if you are going to post pictures online, make sure all your settings are private. You can customize many settings on social networking sites to monitor who has permission to view your photos. Only share the pictures with those you trust completely.
Another option, which is one I personally love is flickr. Flickr allows you to create online albums that are completely private. The only way people can view your images is if you send them a "guest pass," which allows them to view the link of your online album. The guest pass can be taken away anytime you feel like it and it is completely private because you are in absolute control of who views your pictures.
It is also important to monitor the images your children place on social networking sites. Many older children have their own Facebook accounts, where they can post anything they want if parental monitoring is not conducted. Warn your children about the consequences and dangers about posting personal information and photos online. Always monitor what your children are posting to keep them safe.