Dogs really ARE Miracles with Paws!!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Blog Safety?

I have pondered Blog Safety before, but not to the degree that I should have...apparently. I have been blogsurfing tonight and I ran across this:

"Although I enjoy the www, it can be a very unsafe place. I enjoy sharing my grandchildren with my friends from blogland. Most of you are mothers, grandparents or friends who enjoy seeing them grow, change and enjoy life. We should be careful about what we expose on our blogs. I won't be using the grands names anymore. Most of you know XXX's name but please refer to him as XXX from now on. I wanted everyone to know why I don't use their names anymore. I will alter all pics that I post. Below are some tips you should consider if you're posting about loved ones on your blog.

Do not use real names ~ Choose nicknames or use the first letter of their name.

Do not mention locations ~ State/ City / School /

Do not post pictures ~ I have chosen to use altered photos

You may want to consider a private blog ~ only those with password can access the blog

I don't want to seem impersonal, but I have to protect my loved ones. I hope you understand and will take precautions also."


Now...the reason this person decided to post these "rules" is because her friend had an experience like this...

"An overseas porn site linked to her blog, they linked to a post that had a pic of her granddaughter."

Yikes!! Now what to do? How do you all feel about this? I am perplexed. And kind of sick. It is just awful this world we live in...sometimes.

And when I sat down to post, I WAS going to post all about my happy shopping trip! What a difference an hour makes...

22 comments:

Pam Aries said...

Well...it did happen to my friend and i'm guessing it is the same person you mentioned! This is no urban myth. She came across the site accidentally when she googled her site name and saw her grandaughter's name.so she clicked on. It is unbelievabe the extent that creeps will go. arrrrghh It's a shame that you can't even post a picture of your kids having a good time. Just be very careful what you post when it comes to children.

laurie said...

it's true that once the stuff is on the web, it's there forever for anyone who wants to see it.

i monitor my statcounter pretty carefully and pay attention to how people get to my blog. so far so good.

i am fairly careless about details about myself, but i do try to not name my young nieces and nephews, and not reveal where they live.

i'd say don't let it cramp your style too much, but just be aware that not everyone on the web is a nice person.

though the chances of them finding your blog are fairly remote.

ChrisB said...

This is quite scary and I was wondering how she found out~ but this has been answered in the comments. I might just google my name and see what comes up!

Sandy said...

Thank you for this. It scares the crap out of me, but thank you for this.

Just Seeking said...

I made this choice early on too. Everyone has to find the way that works best for them. For me, it's initials for names, no home location stuff mentioned, and being okay with sharing some pics. But everyone needs to do what feels right to them.

Frances said...

I've been incredibly lucky so far - knocking on wood as I type - no crazies so far.
But after reading that, well I took a pause to think.
I never put pics of any living family members on my blog, and I always use nicknames for friends.

Kellan said...

It worries me as well. I have been very open on my blog - with my own family - but I am careful with my neices, nephews, etc... I can become really scared if I think about it too much. I just try to have confidence that most people - the majority of people (and I believe this) are good people and the few that are out to hurt someone - I pray they stay away from me and my family. It may be naive. I don't know. Have a good weekend - Kellan

coloursofdawn said...

I have been careful with names and exact location. I don't put a lot of family photos on (I did when I wrote about Chase) and I don't put anyone on in a way they could be recognized unless I know they would be okay with it. The nice things is, we develop friendships and can share more info through emails on occasion. I think we should be cautious, but fear should not run our lives. These things do happen, and can happen to anyone, but unfortunately these creeps often have there own victims to post about. It is sickening that it happens. I hope things turn out okay for the person(s) this happened to.

Rose Daughter said...

ok, that is a scary reminder. With my blog, I only use nicknames for everyone. But I do have a family blog, I'm considering making it private, that would solve a lot of things. Thanks for bringing this to light.

Alison said...

Thank you for this reminder...these thoughts do cross my mind, but I do post pics of my family, but I definitely don't of other people.

lisa's chaos said...

I have seen a couple of blogs lately that have posted babies bottoms and I have shaken my head and told my husband how horrible I think it is that some perve will get hold of those photos but I am too scared to tell that blogger what I think. It's not my business and I don't want them to think I'm judging them, nor do I want to anger them. I'm too scared to tell them what I fear is happening with their precious baby's photos. :(

Willowtree said...

I'm surprised that she wasn't already following the rules she posted.

It really is a sad state of affairs. And even though I don't use my name or give too many details, I have twice been tracked down by bloggers, who have driven past my house, that in itself is a bit scary.

Joy T. said...

I get quite a few emails from people who are curious and ask some pretty private questions but I skirt around them when I write back. I feel a bit more secure in knowing it's almost impossible to find me out where I live but I'm still pretty cautious. If my children were smaller though? No way would I be using first names or putting any pictures up of them...especially anything nude. It's sad we have to be like this but that's the way of the world and if we want to stay safe we had better be taking precautions I suppose.

Hayden said...

these are good rules to follow. Like most bloggers, I use an alias and refer to my location geographically but not specifically. All people I mention are given aliases.

I was recently asked by a fellow blogger - who I know is local, but whom I don't know - why I don't post pics of my friends at my dinner parties, but only of food and place settings.

It's not a complete stretch of the imagination to think that he might meet one of my friends in the restaurant biz, and it's just info I don't need to share.

I get between 45 -80 hits on an average day, but my friends list is much smaller, and my comments average under 10.

Quite simply - I don't know who those people are! Knowing their IP isn't enough.

fiwa said...

Yes, it happens. Be careful, but don't let this sickness ruin your enjoyment in blogging. For every sicko there are hundreds of really lovely people. I agree about not using real names or locations, but remember that your city and state can be tracked through sitemeter or any number of similar programs. Also, in some cases if you blog or surf the internet from work, your company name may show in the sitefeed. Mine does because we own our IP address.

Brenda said...

There are some really sick people around but I'm not sure I'm ready to let them take every bit of my enjoyment away from me. I also monitor my statcounter and so far I haven't been hit by too many weirdos (except the one who wanted to kiss my feet!)

The Gal Herself said...

I don't use my own name, nor the name of my friends/family. Or the agency where I work (though that's because I'm afraid they might fire me). Photos of cats that have appeared on my blog aren't even my cats. I don't do this for safety, though after reading these stories I'm glad this is how I've been handling it. I did it this way because writing this blog has been very cathartic for me. I don't want to pull any punches, if I altered what I say it won't be as helpful or important to me. On the other hand, I don't want to HURT anyone with my blog. So I keep things as anonymous as possible.

The www is a much smaller place than we think. My oldest friend (who didn't know I blogged) actually stumbled upon MY blog and recommended it to me because "The Gal Herself" sounded like someone I'd like. Weird, huh?

Kaytabug said...

Wow, thanks for posting this. I start to get comfy with the regular crowd of readers and forget that there are others out there. I do most of these things already, it is nice to remind myself why I am doing it.

sirdar said...

I was phoned once by someone who read my blog. I HAD put way too much information on my blog and especially my profile. I was a new blogger and really didn't know of the dangers at the time. I should have though as I did take some time to learn about privacy when surfing...so it was my own stupidity that allowed someone to find me.

Of course after that I took just about everything about me personally off the blog and you now have what you see. I used to use my kids first names but have now changed then to order of birth...like son of Sirdar or 2nd Daughter of Sirdar...that sort of thing.

I think there are many dangers but there are also about 1 billion blogs out there. And then there is Facebook.....

Debs said...

I know what you mean. I google my name and my kids names often. I no longer post pics of my kids. I have removed them from my blog. I hate the freaks that have taken over our world today.

MamaGeek said...

Before becoming a SAHM I was a Software Engineer. This gave me a lot of insight to the software industry. IT'S TRUE. People are so incredibly careless and open with info it's scary. So much can be derived so quickly. Especially with all the scraping programs that take your content and sell it *and what not*.

This is a great reminder!

Nina said...

I write about everyone in my life, but I give them pseudonyms and I post only thumbnails - and never their faces. I hop this is enough to protect them.