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Making Snapchat safe. A user's safe guide.

Most kids love Snapchat because of its spontaneity. In a generation that believed that shared photos and videos could never be taken back, Snapchat has been a breath of fresh air. When signing up for Snapchat, parents should always be cautious of the age restriction, that can be checked if they will use parental control. Although Snapchat does not directly ask for a user’s age, as per the birth year, the app will be able to detect if a user is under 13 years (minimum restricted age). Under 13 users are directed to a younger version of the app, called ‘Snapkidz’ which does not allow sharing of photos.

Taking only appropriate photos is also very important as other users can take screenshots of the snaps that are sent to them. Although Snapchat could allow a wide connection of users, it is important to only Snapchat the people that a user knows personally. It’s also a lot safer to edit your privacy settings so that only the people that you know can be able to send you snaps.

One of the most important things that Snapchat advocates for is watching what you send. It’s important to keep in mind that whatever is posted on the Internet, even if you choose to delete it, may still be out there. While it can be tempting and seductive to send out a ‘sexy’ picture of yourself, it may still come back to haunt you later. Snapchat users should always report illegal content, particularly sexually exploited pictures of minor to the social media’s administrators.
The privacy settings allow users to block other threatening users who might be bullying them. Blocking a bully is one good way to curb their behavior.

What parents need to know?

For any parent, talking to your child about the unsafe possibilities of Snapchat will make them understand the urgency of using it safely. It’s also important for parents to be aware of the ongoing technology changes and that Apps and services come and go. But the basic principle of privacy, security and safety does not change.

The use of new software for phone tracking may assure parents in fact that their children are not in danger. Because anything digital can be stored, copied and shared, even if intended to be shared privately, being careless could have detrimental consequences.

Most teenagers love Snapchat because they get to enjoy surge in popularity because it trades in a feeling of inconsequentiality. Although some parents may be completely unaware of their child’s use of the application, it is important to constantly keep tabs on their online activities. It might be surprising that Snapchat is already in heavy rotation on your child’s phone, therefore, it is vital to review their list of friends, remove unknown names and check all the privacy settings and update them accordingly. Nowadays developers provide a big variety of features that can be useful for parents. The digital world calls for digital parents.

It’s important for both Snapchat users and their guardians to be web-smart because safety starts with us. And yes-Snapchat can be used safely.

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