Every afternoon in Australia and around the world many thousands of children, some as young as five-years-old, are broadcasting themselves out to the web and their parents probably have no idea.
Cyber safety lady Leonie Smith tells COVERED. just what parents need to watch out for when it comes to their children recording and sharing homemade videos.
Video streaming and video uploading is the latest thing. Yes, it’s fun but a child’s iPod/iPad or smart phone now has the ability to be broadcasting them out to the world.
Your child could very well be talking to a complete stranger or to 20 strangers, or even live streaming themselves, and having middle aged men watching them and commenting on them…all live.
Your child may also be talking back to the middle aged men… live, and they may be asking your child to perform in different ways - do handstands or particular moves and they are complimenting your child on their ‘sexiness’.
Some of the viewers may be bullying and telling your child they are ugly. I’ve seen all of this on YouNow, where anyone can view live streaming video from anyone who is broadcasting, go take a look, you don’t even need to download the app.
Parents need to question just who their children are performing for, and who they are really talking to. Many apps now have video uploading and some apps now have live video streaming.
These apps may also have video sharing so that a child’s video could wind up on other social media apps like Facebook, Vine, Instagram or Twitter or be downloaded privately to be shared in closed online groups.
If your child has use of any internet connect device with a camera, be sure of who they are talking to and where the video of themselves is being broadcast. Parents need to ask, “Who is watching my child?”
What Parents Need To Know
- Does your child’s mobile device have a video camera?
- What apps have access to that camera? Check Settings-Privacy-Camera.
- Does your child have any Lip Sync Karaoke style Apps like Musical.ly or Smule, and are they broadcasting publicly?
- Do they have their own YouTube Channel, and is it public?
- Make sure your children know to come to you if they ever get a message from a stranger.
- Set rules for taking video/photos and sharing these.
- Are the privacy settings enabled on messaging apps?
- Have you approved all your child’s friends on message apps like FaceTime, Messenger and Skype?
- You can disable the camera or other apps on Apple mobile devices via Settings-General-Restrictions (use an unguessable password and don’t lose it!)
- Make sure younger children only use internet connected devices with you nearby.
For all popular messaging apps settings, visit www.thecybersafetylady.com.au/keepingkidssafeonline