Snap Chat important information
Snapchat is one of the top five social media platforms used by children and young people.
The feature known as Snap Map is part of the latest update and shares a user's exact location on a map, the time of day they were there and their speed of travel.
Snapchat has just had a huge update. It now shows where any of the user’s (your child’s) friends are at any time. It uses GPS to precisely pinpoint on a map where the users are, even changing to a car when they move quickly. Your child and other users are depicted by a Bitmoji (as seen below).
Once you get onto the Snap Map it’ll show you where your Snapchat friends are and what they are doing there if they share a picture. The update also allows you to upload Snaps to the "Our Story" so that anyone can see your picture.
Don’t worry though – if you don’t want your location shared then you can set up a "Ghost Mode" to keep it private.
It may sound like innocent fun but if your children have their location shared then people can potentially track them down. If you zoom in enough on the map it shows you exactly where someone is such as their house!
The map shows exactly where they are which has raised serious concerns. While they would need to know your child’s username, and for them to accept their friend request, to access this information it is often easy to find it online.
We urge you to check your child’s settings, ensure they are set to ‘ghost mode’ if necessary.
Update: To turn on Ghost Mode: Open Snapchat onto the camera screen. Pinch inward on this screen as if you’re trying to make it smaller.
You’ll then be taken to the map screen.
You will see your Bitmoji, (or your green silhouette) click on it and your settings appear at the bottom of the screen. Click there and turn ‘ghost mode’ on.
If you haven’t done the update yet (as from 21st June), ghost mode won’t be available
Other Social Media
Please read the following and Government guidance for parents and carers whose children are using social media.
OTHER USEFUL WEBSITES FOR PARENTS AND CARERS
www.parentinfo.org - contains lots of good e safety advice as well as other useful information.
www.internetmatters.org – lots of guidance and articles about keeping children safe online.
http://parents.vodafone.com – provides information and guidance to parents to help understand the digital world.
www.kidsmart.org.uk – has been developed by the charity Childnet International and has information on many of the technologies used by children with guidance on how to stay safe online.