You’ve watched or heard about the popular reality TV show Catfish, but does it really happen in real life? The answer is YES!
People pretend all the time to be someone they are not online. That’s why we feel it’s important to know who you are connecting with, and to have your privacy settings set high. You also want to make sure that you have your location settings turned off on your photos so that when you share them online you are not sharing your location. As we’ve discussed before, your photos when you do not turn your location settings off will have your location exactly to where you are with a map embedded into the photo when you post it online. You should also let your parents know what platforms you are on and give them your passwords.
When people are “Catfishing” they are usually building a relationship with you online first and becoming your friend. They will build your trust in them and eventually they will try to lure you to meet them without telling your parents. We CANNOT stress enough how dangerous this is and if you feel this is happening to you or one of your friends you need to tell a trusted adult immediately.
Not only does Catfishing occur on social media platforms, it does happen when you are playing games online. You may find that they start asking you to join them in private chat rooms or to meet them there again tomorrow at certain times. You need to be cautious about what information you are sharing when you are gaming and online. We recommend that you not use your real name or picture as your profile image. You also don’t want to say what school you attend or your parent’s names or where they work. We always think it’s a good idea to change things up and not be online everyday at the same time. Don’t create a pattern that is easy for other to see.
If you feel or see anything online that leaves you being scared or nervous you need to tell a trusted adult immediately so they can help you.
Playing games online and being on social media can be fun but as always you need to be #sociallysafe.
Comment below to ask Kerry & Stacy of SociallySafe any Social Media related questions or to suggest topics you would like to learn about.