If you've opened Facebook or Instagram recently, you'll likely have seen your friends and acquaintances sharing photos of their children, proudly wearing their uniform on their first day back to school.

What parents forget, in the midst of their pride (okay, and a bit of relief) when their children head back to school after the summer holidays, is that these photos make their subjects easily identifiable.

It's all well and good when it's just your family and close friends seeing the happy snaps but, if spotted by the wrong eyes, your child could fall victim of predators.

Online security experts advise parents to hold from posting these photos on social media but, if you really absolutely must share it, there are some precautions you should take.


Netsafe says parents who share images of their children online - a practice commonly known as "sharenting" - should take a few important steps to ensure the child's safety, including removing any personal information from the photo, such as the school name or logo, or any other element that might make the child easy to identify and locate.

The organisation also recommends you look into the future and think of the digital footprint you are creating for your child online.

This is a good time to go through your social media and double-check all your privacy settings. Think about everyone you've got on your friends network but also the friends they keep, in case they re-share your pictures.

READ MORE: Ten practical tips to help your child deal with back-to-school anxiety