News  » Social media, kids and privacy

Last updated 8:41 AM on 12 May 2014

Regardless of your child's age, the world may already know a lot more about them than you suspect. According to recent research:

  • 92% of children under the age of two have a digital presence (it starts with proud parents posting newborn baby photos on Facebook or Instagram)
  • a quarter of Australian children aged between eight and 12 use Facebook, despite the minimum age for a user being 13
  • more than 20 per cent of tweens publish photos of themselves on the photo-sharing website Instagram
  • young people between the ages of 14 and 19 have an average of 453 fans, friends or followers on social media.

Even if you don't know a lot about social media yourself, you can help your child stay safe online simply by asking them about the social media accounts they are using, and regularly reminding them the importance of keeping their personal information private.

The Information and Privacy Commission NSW has created a lot of practical informationfor parents and children, to support 2014 Privacy Awareness Week. It includes:

  • security tips for parents and teens
  • resources to help prevent identity theft
  • information on cyberbullying
  • guides to protecting your digital reputation
  • information about mobile apps and the data they may collect.

You can also find a parent's guide to social media – including Kik Messenger, Instagram, Vine and Facebook - in the School A to Z technology glossary.

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