I need an Instagram expert

(9 Posts)
BlessThisMess Sun 06-Aug-17 22:10:11

Hi, I've just found some awful disgusting messages on Instagram between my 12yo daughter and some unknown person. Is it possible to report them? Is it possible to find out who they are?

She is of course now banned from all electronics for the foreseeable future.

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marleyandpea Sun 06-Aug-17 22:21:25

Firstly screenshot the messages and people can delete sent messages from their end. Yes you can report the person - go on their account and report, it will give you different options on why you are reporting them. You might be able to find out who they are by their posts? If it's sexual definitely involve the police. Sorry for your daughter.

pieceofpurplesky Sun 06-Aug-17 22:21:37

Yes you can report on Instagram if you scroll down in settings there is a report button

waitingforthewaterwars Sun 06-Aug-17 22:38:07

Screen shot the conversations.
Go to the Instagram help centre and follow the instructions to block the person, and report their account. They will also have some other good information about what to do. If you block a person, they won't know and will no longer be able to interact with your daughter. BUT can still see her stuff if account is not private.

So, is your daughters account set to public or private? If public it could be a completely scumbag from wherever. For a 12 year old you need the account to be private, it will limit the number of friends she can accumulate, but she will be able to control who views her account.

Also you should definitely turn off the location services for the app on the device. Instagram live streaming has a geo-tagging service that pinpoints location ( so does Snapchat- the mapping locations features on Snapchat are extraordinarily detailed in revealing locations, and Facebook). The live streaming features in the apps are a nightmare for stalkers and predators. Within the settings of her device, you can find all the apps listed - you will be able to switch off the location.

Review all the apps relating to social media she has. Some are horror shows, some are fine. Some need a bit of a conversation with her about safe behaviour while using them.

I write for a social media security company specialising in training kids and parents in safe social media use. If you have any other concerns I'm happy to answer them.

waitingforthewaterwars Sun 06-Aug-17 22:44:54

Should add that if it is sexual in nature, you should report it too the police.

BlessThisMess Sun 06-Aug-17 23:38:28

Thank you for the help. Yes, it is sexual. She has apparently been online friends with this person for a while. I do check up from time to time but when her school friends are using unrecognisable usernames it's difficult to see who is a real life friend and who isn't.

Now I've read more, it seems it might be a youngish teen boy in Germany. Anyway she won't be on any electronic devices for months after this.

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GreenTulips Sun 06-Aug-17 23:43:40

Still report him to the police - just done similar - screen shot - report and block

Look on other accounts see if she's FB friends etc

waitingforthewaterwars Mon 07-Aug-17 00:30:42

Just a couple of things.
The key words in your last post are "might be a youngish teen boy". People are often not who they say they are on line. What seems to be a young boy, could absolutely be a cat of a different colour. Verifications systems of age and profile pictures can be faked so easily online.
Typical online predator behaviour is to appear as some one of a compatible age, and conduct a relationship for a period of time- before asking for a meet or descending into inappropriate posting and asking the other person to respond in kind.

Additionally, a complete ban is often counterproductive. Much of a teens/tweens life is conducted online these days. Almost all social media users will be , at some stage exposed to inappropriate content. Teaching your child to manage risks, and to understand and empower them about how to handle is , is far more effective than completely banning it. Exposure to risk does not necessarily equate to harm.
Children who learn how to deal with crap like this are far better equipped than those who do not.

I'd suggest a big talk about online safety, background content in posts, wearing school uniform in pictures,the forever nature of the internet, privacy etc, I can go on, and on for ages.
But I would really suggest that a ban is not the way to go for an extended period of time. You will inadvertently teach her to hide such activity the next time it takes place, when she should come to you immediately. Social media has a huge effect on the young especially girls, and banning her is not teaching her how to navigate it safely.

Become her friend on all social media accounts, if she doesn't like it - she can't have the account. This puts you in a position of seeing all her activity.

BlessThisMess Mon 07-Aug-17 11:59:01

Thank you - I really appreciate the advice. She has 2 Instagram accounts - it seems one is public and one is private. I am friends with her on both of them and also insist on knowing her phone PIN and I do check and review things, but what got me here was I didn't know about the message facility on IG. That's where all this was taking place. I've been checking her posts and comments but not messages.

My current decision is to keep her off the internet /computers completely for 2 weeks. I've been concerned for a while that she spends too much time on them - now she'll have to find some alternative ways of filling her time, which will be no bad thing. Then we'll have some closely supervised limited reintroduction.

I am reporting the accounts involved - it seems he has at least 2 as well. There is a lot of emotional manipulation of 'I'm going to kill myself' and 'nobody loves me' which of course keeps a kind-hearted girl like my DD hooked in.

OP’s posts: |

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