Instagram’s advice for parents concerned about their child’s online safety

Directing your child through a world of constant internet access and an inescapable dependence of social media can be difficult.

As a result, Instagram has taken steps to ensure parents feel happy and safe about letting their children enjoy the same social media apps as their peers.

After updating their safety settings, the social media platform has released a guide to help parents have ‘honest conversations with their teens about responsible social media habits.’

The guide, which is called ‘Know how to talk with your teen about Instagram: A parents guide’, has been developed by the platform in collaboration with charities including Diana Awards, ParentKind and Internet Matters.

Their advice for teens and parents includes, ‘5 ways to control your Instagram experience’ and advice from experts on the ‘5 things to ask your teen about Instagram’.

The guide advises parents to first discuss with their teen about their account privacy. It reads: ‘One of the first things you will want to talk about with your teen is whether their account is going to be public or private.’

For those concerned with individuals targeting their teen, Instagram also advises parents to utilise the power of the ‘block’ setting.

‘Your teen can block accounts they don’t want to interact with. This will block people from seeing and commenting on their posts.’

In order to reduce online bullying, Instagram suggests parents and teens consider filtering the comments and posts they will be able to see: ‘We’ve built filters that automatically remove offensive words and phrases and bullying comments.’

The app also offers parents the opportunity to manage the amount of time being spent online via a new Activity dashboard setting.

‘Your Activity dashboard shows your teen how much time they’ve spent on Instagram for the past day and week, as well as their average time on the app.’

The guide details some suggestions of age-friendly Instagram accounts too, which teens might be interested in following.