At what age would you let your child have a Snapchat account?

We asked 1,427 parents and got expert advice from a child internet safety charity about when they think it's OK for a child to have his or her own Snapchat account...

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In a nutshell: 13 is the age most people said they’d let their child have a Snapchat account (we polled 1,427 parents).

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As your child gets older, there’s a fair chance they’ll be thinking about joining various social media platforms.

One of the more popular chat apps for teens is Snapchat. Messages and vids or pics are shared in real time and disappear on viewing – unlike Insta and Facebook where the ‘wall’, ‘feed’ or direct messaging function keep a record of all you do.

Snapchat’s designed more for instant chat – like MSN in the ‘old days’ 😊

What age does Snapchat say kids can have their own account?

Snapchat says a child should be 13 before he or she can have an account. Snapchat has its own online safety centre which offers advice on staying out of harm’s way while on the app.

But they don’t seem to offer any specific advice or guidance for parents. For that, you might want to look at the info on Internet Matters.

What do parent say about their children having a Snapchat account?

When we asked 1,427 parents at what age they’d let their child have their own Snapchat account, the most popular answers were:

  • Not sure (36%)
  • Never or 12 (both 27%)
  • 11 (3%)
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When we asked for further comments, quite a few parents said that, even though the minimum age for being on Snapchat is 13, lots of them wouldn’t want their children on there until more like 15 (if at all).

One respondent said: “I believe the legal requirement is 13 but I would not encourage it at that age.”

Others didn’t like the idea of their children being on it as they’re not very familiar with it, and another parent pointed out: “A lot of kids get it and don’t tell you.” 🤔

What do the experts say?

Internet child safety charity Childnet International advises it’s always best to wait until the advised age before you let children join any social media platform.

If they’re on there when they shouldn’t be, through supplying a fake age, they’re not necessarily going to be protected by any of the safety measures put in place.

In addition, some of the content on such platforms isn’t designed for kids and hasn’t been made with them in mind.

There’s more info on Childnet International’s safety blog if you think you’d find it handy.

Image: Getty Images

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