Youth Matters

Teenagers on Social Media – Keep em Safe!

Youth Matters with Chelsea Girard. Peer pressure, social media,Prom, National Youth Week, pride flag,Community, Windsor-Essex Pride Fest, Won't Tell A Soul, Unsung Heroes, Your Guide to Journalism 101, Photojournalism - Capturing Life at it’s Rarest Form, Raw and Intricate, You’re Never Too Young for a Bucket List, Remembrance Day in Windsor-Essex, Eating Disorders, "It got better, but it never ended", Love is Love

Is your teen glued to their computer screen/social media and you’re unsure of what they could be doing?

Social media is one of the most influential aspects of a teenager’s life next to parents and their peers. Find out now a few tips on how online connections can be safer.

Social media can be used to connect with friends and family across the world, search for information, and share interests through virtual communities and networks but is that really what our teens are using this source for?

Studies show 91% of Canadian Internet users have a social media account and 66% have used social media in the past month according to CanadianInternet.com. Visit their site HERE.

Teenagers don’t realize how much information the Internet has collected over the years of our personal lives, every post, comment, and like can be documented and traced. Teenagers have the tendency to skip over reading the privacy policies and terms of service because of the pages on pages of tiny written rules and guidelines.

Teens are unaware of the potential dangers of social networking such as stalking, identity theft, online victimization, and location updates. To this day, 68% of students believe if a social network has a privacy policy, that means “they will not share my personal information with anyone according to a Canadian study on teens using social media.”

In order to protect your teen from these risks, realize the threats your teen could be victimized by thoroughly checking their social media for bullying and inappropriate comments. Passwords should always be kept a secret and complex in order to avoid hackers. Simply changing your passwords every now and then can keep people from invading your personal accounts and finding information on you.

Teens have a tendency to follow and add people they don’t know on social media sites such as Twitter and Instagram which can create an open playing field for predators and stalking.

Teaching your teen about the dangers of talking to people online can alleviate pressure from bad influences, peer pressure, and a difference in opinion with those they may not know personally.

Teenagers in my generation tend to post personal information online such as phone numbers, driver licence numbers and other personal data about themselves that others can steal and use to pretend to be someone they are not. Also, posting what school you attend, what street you live on, and where you will be at what time can also lead to a predator having easy access to finding you.

Keep your teens safe and properly teach them how to use social media to their advantage, not someone else’s.