Mandarina L'École des Réseaux Sociaux
  • Personal data is any information about you that may help to identify who you are. Examples of personal data include your name, your date of birth, home address, your usernames and passwords. Other data may be collected by an app or device such as the time you spend online or the location from which you accessed an online service.
  • Children could share personal data in a number of different ways online; such as revealing personal details in a message to another user or in an online chat group, completing a public online profile on social media that includes a range of personal details, or unknowingly revealing details through photos, videos or livestream broadcasts.
  • Photos and videos are an increasingly common form of communication for children but can sometimes reveal more information than intended. They may show characteristics of the person or people in the photo/video such as appearance, gender and approximate age. Clothing such as a school uniform can reveal location details. Other features present in the background can also reveal personal details. Children may also reveal details through what they say or do on camera in videos and livestreams.
  • A child with multiple accounts online may share different types of information on different accounts. When viewed separately, the accounts may offer limited information to establish their identity, but collectively they can reveal more. Think of it like a jigsaw – each account is a piece of the puzzle, and on its own does not show the full picture. Collating the information on the accounts is like assembling the jigsaw pieces; it gives you a bigger picture of who someone is.
  • Children might share personal details of others (such as family or friends) through their online activity – through photos or videos, or comments made when communicating online with others.
Mandarina L'École des Réseaux Sociaux
  • Help your child to understand what personal data is – talk about what types of information they should keep private online (e.g. name, home address, date of birth) but other types of personal data they might be able to share more freely online (e.g. favourite food, achievements in a game, etc.). Discussing ways of sharing details in a less specific manner can help your child answer questions from others while still protecting their identity (e.g. stating the country they live in rather than the town/city).
  • Explain to your child that photos, videos and livestreams can sometimes reveal more personal details than we intend. Encourage them to check photos and videos for information before uploading or sharing. Remind them that livestreams are ‘live’; anything they say, do or show will be seen by anyone viewing and that includes any personal details they might reveal. Livestreams can also be captured or recorded by a viewer and shared more widely after they have been broadcast.
  • Discuss the importance of respecting other people and their personal data. Encourage your child to always ask permission of the person/people in a photo or video before uploading or sharing it, and to respect their wishes if they decline permission. Remind your child they should always talk to you or another trusted adult if they are unsure if a photo/video is okay to share online.
  • Take time to consider your own online sharing behaviour – are you setting a good example for your child? As a parent/carer, you may enjoy sharing photos and information about your child on social media with family and friends. Discussing with your child what they are happy for you to share about them online is important.
  • Work with your child to find and use privacy settings that can control who can see the content they post online. These settings can be used to make content more private, which will limit who may be able to contact your child or see their personal details on their account.