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September 18, 2021

Police Urge Parents to Avoid Popular Social Media Trend

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As security breaches continue to pose a threat to peaceful living, police authorities have warned trendy parents against a social media activity that can compromise their kids' safety.

Every parent wants their child to be safe and, at the same time, they want to flaunt the bundle of joy to their many friends and followers on social media.

Unfortunately, these days, many trends have become part of society's culture, and sometimes these trends are innocent but pose grave threats.

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One recent trend to have swayed the internet and social media users are the "back to school" photos trend, where parents share details of their little ones returning to school after a fun-filled summer.

Every parent would agree that safety comes before trends and would heed the advice of the McHenry County Sheriff's Office in Woodstock, Illinois, against sharing these trendy photos that reveal too much.

Several cases of danger and threats have been traced to the information shared on social media, and in a bid to protect kids from all sorts of attacks, the police urged parents to refrain from the contemporary culture.

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The Facebook post shared by the sheriff's office showed Deputy Sheriff Tim Creighton holding up a sign in two snaps where he pointed out what not to share to avoid predators. The post read:

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 "This information - school name, classroom, grade, age, etc. - can all be used by predators..."

The post then went on to suggest not sharing other details like the teacher's name, the height of the child, and other identifying features alongside overly sensitive details like passwords or security questions.

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Thousands of parents and families responded to the helpful post, with over sixty thousand others hitting the share button, alerting other parents and caregivers of a better way to love and parent their kids.

While the post does not suggest that families should stop sharing photos of their kids, it simply points that in the face of global security theft, identifying details should be kept out.

In an interview, Deputy Sheriff Creighton reportedly noted that the pictures were shared as a reminder to families to think before they share. He added that it was best to keep personal details to a minimum when on the internet.

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The police officer pointed out that identity thefts are more common these days because parents often use their children's names as part of their password, so the safety tips also protect the parents.

Zincir-Heywood, a cybersecurity expert who teaches in the computer science department at Dalhousie University, echoed Creighton's points in a post where she warned against providing certain details in social media quizzes.

She noted that some sensitive questions asked on some sites could grant cyber thieves access to your bank details, so it is in the best interest of all to be security conscious.

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