Recently I was watching a news story about several women who had fallen prey to a man with a fake Facebook profile. I often wonder how people fall for these scams, but as I watched it, I could see how it could happen – the man seemed genuine and “normal.” In fact, I have found myself believing in people that I’ve met online only to find out later that they’ve been less than truthful.

This scares me, because while I think I am relatively intelligent, and it’s my job to be online all day everyday where I come across every imaginable scam you can think of, I have been duped by “online personas.”  So if I can be tricked, what chance does my mother have online….or even scarier, my kids?

Our client, Location Labs, recently introduced something that I am hoping will help. I do not normally blog on client news, but this addresses something very important to me. Location Labs’ new suite of family safety services service, Safely, helps parents better protect their children. Their newly launched offering, Safely Social Monitor, makes sure their children are using Facebook in a safe manner.  You will be able to use this to see what your children are interacting with most on Facebook and what photos they upload.  Yes, you can do that by going to their Facebook page, but how many of us forget to look through email, or texts, much less have time to stalk them on Facebook.

But using Social Monitor, parents can get alerts when their children are tagged in photos or when they do other activities, like posting inappropriate words or phrases. And, they are able to do this with a dashboard that allows parents to visualize the data easily, without having to sign into Facebook.

I know many people think of this as stalking their kids and don’t want to do it, however, as a daily user of social media, the things I have seen make me very concerned about what could happen to my kids if I am not diligent.  Personally, I think it’s irresponsible as a parent not to do anything in my power to monitor their social media activity closely.

What do you think? Would you use a service like Safely to monitor your kids, or do you think it’s a violation of their privacy?