Online Privacy Recommendations for Your Children

A child’s online reputation begins as soon as a full name or photo is posted on the Internet. Parents active in social media and blogging may wonder what information is appropriate and safe to share as they discuss and post stories about their children. It’s also important for parents to help children learn how to keep their own personal information private., suggests the following:

For Elementary School Kids:

  • Age/birthdate
  • Full Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Name of School
  • Password Information
  • Images (with possible exception depending on parental involvement)

For Middle School Kids:

  • Age/birthdate
  • Full Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Name of School
  • Password Information (even to friends)
  • Most Images (At this age, kids get into social networking and will be sharing images via cell phones and digital cameras. Parents should focus on limiting the images their children share online and teaching principles of privacy & propriety.)

For High School Kids:

  • Birthdate
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Password Information (even to friends)
  • Offensive or Sexually Suggestive Messages or Images

The information your child should keep private doesn’t deviate much over the course of growing up. Personally identifiable information such as birthdates, home addresses, phone numbers, and excessive pictures should always be avoided.

At an early age, it is important to establish the difference between personal information and public information with your child.

By the time children are in high school, they should be keeping most of their personal information private, but they should also be encouraged to use the Internet in helpful ways. A strong, positive online reputation can be an incredibly constructive force in a community, and it can attract college admissions officers & potential job recruiters.


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