FORT MYERS, Fla. - Many of the pictures your kids post on social media probably seem harmless. But some pictures might be a little more private; maybe something meant only for their closest friends.
Imagine how they would feel if those pictures end up being traded on the internet and stared at by predators.
It sounds creepy and it is. Regardless of the nature of the pictures, if perverted hackers want to see your kids, nothing they post is private.
In the deep, dark corners of the internet, you'll find millions of pictures that were never meant to be seen by the masses. Scantily clad girls, many of them young teenagers. They thought their pictures were private, but it's easy pickings for millions of online predators.
"These images are all over the internet," said Special Agent Steve Brenton with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
"Sites are popping up everyday where kids are going to. The minute the kids are going there the bad guys are going there too," said Brenton.
After all his years in law enforcement, Agent Brenton says he's still amazed at the amount of time predators will spend hacking into photos. But they'll eventually find them and put them online for anyone to see.
"These were images that were widely traded on the internet," Brenton said.
Computer Security expert John Benkert, owner of CPR Tools in LaBelle, says if you want to keep your kid's photos safe, you need to know what they're posting. Even if that means some uncomfortable conversations.
"I did it with my son and he hated it the first time I walked into his room and said 'what you just posted was inappropriate and here's why.' Those are the conversations we have to have with our children and until we do that it's not gonna solve the problem," said Benkert.
Remember that passwords will only provide so much protection. If a dedicated and experienced hacker wants your photos, chances are, they're going to get them. The best defense is to never post them.