Sharenting is a new norm that came with the advent and popularity of social media sites. The foremost of which are Facebook and Instagram.
Defined as parent’s overuse of social media to give out information about their children to family members, relatives and friends, sharenting among parents, is usually out of deep pleasure for having a new arrival or for their children’s latest achievements.
Not a few are engaged in info and photo sharing activities quite too often, sometimes, even just because a child looked so cute and adorable as he or she sleeps, plays or eats. Yet research studies show that sharenting by parents, usually by mothers, divulges too much information that can make a child vulnerable to the dark elements and unpleasant forces that exist in the World Wide Web.
The Dangers Faced by Children When Too Much Information About Them are Being Shared
Too many crimes against children have been committed by sex offenders, which is why parents fear them the most. Yet one source of information from where criminals could look for victims are at social media sites. They can easily find a potential victim, know their age, their birthday, what they look like, where they live, what school they go to, and/or the kind of activities they usually engage in.
Even information about parents can be useful, such as knowing if a parent is at home, or dining at some fancy restaurant. They post pictures while on a trip, whilst make it obvious that their children are not with them. There are always useful hints that at some point or in certain moments, a child being stalked will be on his or her own.
Identity theft is another cause for concern, especially if a parent will be chronicling everything about a child from the day he or she was born, throughout his or her growing up years. As soon as that child reaches the age of majority, his or her identity is ripe for using. To use for whatever unscrupulous plans that information about a child’s identity was collected through the years.
Sharenting is common among social media site users, which means millions of children can be potential targets of identity theft.
Photos that parents thought were cute can be a source of embarrassment when that child grows older. Once posted as social media content, they can still be retrieved by those who intend to do malice. Images of a child while in an embarrassing pose, or wearing a costume he or she would rather forget to have worn, could serve as good materials for cyber bullying.
Researchers though, do not discourage sharing but gives caution to parents about thoughtful and wise dissemination of information and images; including making them inaccessible for public viewing. A child’s personal information is just as valuable as their parent’s, which are kept protected and private for security reasons.
It is proper therefore, for parents not to forget that a child becomes vulnerable when too much information about them become available in the Internet