This post was submitted by Wendy Wright.
Pictures are an essential part for bloggers or social media. Without realizing it, there is a chance you could be revealing private information. Here are some tips to keep you safe online through your photographs.
Examine the background of your photograph
Taking pictures in front of your house is great for the first day of school or Halloween costumes, but take a good look at your house.
- Is the house number visible?
- Can you see a street sign?
- Are there distinguishable features that set our house apart?
- Can you tell what school my child attends?
If you answer yes to these questions, then consider not posting the pictures or retaking them in a different location. Anything you can do to help generalize your surroundings helps keep your family safe.
Consider the background when on Skype or a Google+ hangout
When you are online with family and friends you know well, this is not an issue. Let’s say you take a business call or decide to chat with others online. You are essentially inviting strangers into your home via the webcam. Take a look at what is visible on your screen. Check for these items behind you.
- Can you see a photograph of your child’s classroom, complete with the teacher’s name and school name?
- Any trophies on the shelf with sports team name mentioned?
- Are sports team pictures showing?
Examine clothing choices for your children
- Is the school name or team name visible on the shirt or any piece of clothing?
- Can an identifying symbol be seen?
- Is my child’s name visible?
Double check the name and information on the image file
- Is your child’s name on the picture?
- “Stephanie’s honor award at Franklin Elementary School 2012” gives away too many details.
- Turn off tagging your location on your photos, especially your cell phone and Instagram.
What do you do to keep your family safe when sharing photographs online?