Blogging is like an online diary where bloggers write a piece of themselves-what happened to them that day, where they were, how they felt, etc.-and post it online for everyone to see. This practice has captures a lot of teenagers, male and female alike, since it brings their “expression of emotions” in a totally different height. Often, these teenagers maintain a personal blog online without the knowledge of their parents. Take a look at the linkwheel
Based from very recent statistics, half of all the blogs that are posted online were created by teenagers. And while social networking sites have been a fad as well, a lot still maintain personal blogs on these social networking sites. The same statistics show that kids reveal a lot of their personal information through their blogs including their full name, contact information (email or phone number), and their location. These detailed pieces of information can be very attractive to identity theft criminals, scammers, and other online predators.
Blogs are not malicious by nature. It is actually a perfect avenue for kids to improve their writing skills and communications. However, it is important that you discuss with your kids the dangers or posting too much information about themselves. If you are a parent and your child blogs, then you have to make sure that they don’t reveal too much personal information so that they will never fall prey to identity theft or fraud. Here are some suggestions on how you can get started with your kids:
1. Before you even allow your kids to use the internet, you have to maintain certain rules and you have to be very diligent in maintaining this rule. You are not really invading your kid’s privacy, you are merely protecting them from the various threats that they may encounter online. You have to censor everything that they plan to post online-pictures, blogs or any personal information. There may be photos that would hint where you kid studies like a school mascot or where you live like a town photo.
2. Tell your kids that before they post any information about themselves, they should first ask themselves if they will be comfortable showing these pieces of information to strangers. If they are in doubt or do not feel comfortable, they should not post it or they should remove any previous information that they have posted.
3. Check out the blogging service that your child uses and see if it offers private blogs or any privacy settings that would allow your child to restrict who sees the blog or not.
4. Bookmark your child’s blog and read it from time to time. You have to monitor your child’s blog and see if there is any personal information that is being posted that is beyond what he or she is supposed to post.
5. Try to find other blogs that are also maintained by teens of your child’s age. Find one that does not contain too much personal information and ask your child to view it as a good example to emulate.
Tina L. Douglas is a well established author on the topic of identity theft.