With the tech sector growing as fast as it has over the past decade, for some it is hard to keep up with simply knowing how to operate the newest technology. However, when it comes to how to use this new technology safely most people do not have any idea of how to proceed. An area of technology that concerns us the most is the meteoric rise in social media applications. Facebook and Instagram to name a couple, raise questions about social media safety, like, is it safe for ourselves and is it safe for our kids. One application that might bring more concern than others is Snapchat. This is as a result of one of its basic functions, that the pictures which are sent to us and those we send can only be viewed once.
When things are sent to us personally, we know what appears, the real concern comes when we think about those more vulnerable. Chief among these are children, how is it possible to make sure that our kids are not being exposed to things they should not if all the information disappears instantly? So, because of this we must wonder, is Snapchat safe for kids? That is obviously a question you must weigh and answer yourself; but here are a couple things you should know to better make that decision for your child.
Understanding Privacy Settings
When parents ask the question if a technology is safe for kids, in this case, is Snapchat safe for kids, parental controls are usually the first option they turn to. However, Snapchat does not have parental controls for social media safety. It does have privacy settings which can make the application safer for those using it. It does this by allowing you to change who can send the account messages, notifications, and who can view your location. The option to turn off quick add also works to keep the contact list of your child limited to only people they know. The downside of these privacy settings is that they are in fact privacy settings and not parental controls. This means that you cannot lock them with a passcode to keep your child from changing the settings to whatever they desire.
Using Third Party Applications
There is another route that parents can take to make them feel better about the question, is Snapchat safe for kids, and be confident that it is. By downloading third party applications which can assist in monitoring your child’s phone, you can gain some peace of mind. Many of these applications will provide similar features. These features included GPS tracking and a digital fence, the ability to view text/picture messages and stored photos, as well as to notify you when designated keywords appear. While parents’ intention is to keep their children safe many of these third-party applications call in to question how far is too far when monitoring. Poor handling of privacy may cause confrontation between parents and their children. Therefore, it is important to search carefully for applications which take a tasteful approach to monitoring.
If you truly are worried about this idea is Snapchat safe for kids, there are less intrusive approaches. There are applications which intelligently track trends in messages rather than notifying you of specific ones. This increases the privacy for your child while keeping you aware of any issues; either caused by a change in behaviour of your child or those who are messaging them. Either route you choose it is important to think about the social media safety options which appropriately balance the safety and privacy for your child.