Parents warned to never post back-to-school photos of their children on social media
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Featured Image Credit: Ianni Dimitrov Pictures/Alamy Stock Photo/Leithan Partnership t/a Park Lane Pictures/Alamy Stock Photo
Up and down the country, parents are sending their children back to school for a new term and for many this involves celebratory photographs.
However, a warning has now been issued to any parents who might post these pictures on social media.
According to an Australian Police sergeant, parents could unknowingly be putting their children in danger with the popular practice.
Sergeant Nigel Dalton, from Queensland's Crime Prevention team, told Perth Now: "When somebody takes a photograph of a child in their school uniform, firstly you're identifying their school."
This is because the pictures could contain seemingly innocuous details - like street signs and number plates - that could be used to identify and locate the children.
"Unfortunately, that is the way we have to live and we have to protect our children as best as possible," he advised.
This warning was also echoed by home security experts, ADT, who advised that if parents do post the pictures, they should ensure the school logo isn't on show.
Glenn Amato, the ADT managing director, told the Liverpool Echo that back to school pictures could also pose a more general security risk.
He said: "As schools across the country reopen following the summer holidays this September, many well-meaning parents will be uploading photos of their children on social media platforms, such as Facebook and Instagram to celebrate the milestone.
"But as social feeds become filled with seemingly harmless photos of smiling children and beaming parents, these images could sadly be opening households up to attacks from burglars and online fraudsters. The issue is that these images can end up unwittingly containing a wealth of personal information that could be dangerous in the wrong hands."
The managing director added that it's also of the utmost importance not to tag your children's location in pictures posted online.
As an extra precautionary measure, location data should have been turned off on mobile devices too.
Sergeant Dalton went on to identify another common practice that could be putting children in danger - playing video games.
This is because they are typically connected to the internet and could allow children to connect with adults online.
"If you don't know who your child is playing video games with, you should start finding out," he warned.
"The average age of a video-gamer in Australia is 34. There are going to be some people within that age group who are attracted to children."