Got a Kid on Instagram? Here Are 4 Easy Ways to Protect Her Privacy (and Your Cell Phone Bill)
If you’ve let your child (age 13 or older) have an Instagram account, chances are you already trust her. And you definitely don’t want to paw through every inane sleepover party post to make sure she’s staying safe and not costing you an arm and a leg in data usage. (We get it: Everybody wore matching onesies and lip-synced to Taylor Swift.) But hey, it doesn’t hurt to be extra precautious. So here are four super-easy Instagram settings all parents should teach their kids to enable, in addition to talking about responsible social media behavior, of course.
This essentially means that just your child’s followers—and only your child’s followers—can see her posts and stories. Explain the importance of vetting follow requests carefully. If she doesn’t know the person, she shouldn’t accept the request.
To enable: Go to your profile icon > tap the settings gear wheel in the top right > turn on the “Privacy Account” setting
Share with specific followers
This isn’t a setting as much as teaching your kid why he might not want to post every story or photo to every single follower. (Does Pop Pop really need to see the gross bloody nose pics your son so desperately wants to share with down-the-street Jason?) Instead, show him how to create groups and direct message relevant posts to that group (or individual) only.
To enable: Tap the paper plane icon in the upper right corner > tap the plus sign in the upper right corner > select followers to add to group
Turn off location services
It’s up to you if you feel creeped out by Instagram (and in turn, your child’s followers) knowing where she is based on her geo tag locations. If you are, you can easily disable such tracking, via her iPhone settings.
To enable: Open iPhone settings > privacy > location services > scroll down to Instgram and tap “Never”
Use less data
Just us or are you as wildly shocked every month when you get charged $30 for going over your allotted data? To help keep your tween’s non-Wi-Fi Instagram use in check, here’s a handy trick: Enable “Use Less Data” so he can’t access videos (and other data-sucking posts) when not connected to a network. A word to the wise, though: You may have to sneakily turn this setting on when he’s sleeping…then feign ignorance when he asks why Jason’s skateboard video won’t load.
To enable: Go to your profile icon > tap the settings gear wheel in the top right > cellular data use > select “use less data”