Posting pictures of your children online is ‘irresponsible’: Nico Sell on Web Summit Centre Stage

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Nico Sell is the Co-Founder of Wickr: a secure messaging service considered the most impenetrable of its kind. She’s offered a $100,000 reward to anyone who can find a vulnerability in it.

Nico joined the Guardian’s Nathalie Nahai for a talk on whether online privacy has become a luxury on Web Summit Centre Stage this morning.

“Privacy is something that now only billionaires and celebrities can afford and yet it’s something we all deserve,” she said.

She contrasted previous generations’ aspirations of fame with the current difficulties of keeping your life private:

“The Editor of Vogue Anna Wintour actually said that it’s more in vogue to be un-Googlable’,” she said.

Nico and Nathalie on Web Summit Centre Stage.

The conversation turned to parents posting pictures of their children online, with Nathalie asking Nico where she stands on the issue:

“It’s irresponsible to put pictures of your kids online.

“Firstly, there are geotags involved and protecting your children’s location is of utmost importance,” she said.

Nico went on to say that she doesn’t post pictures of her own children online, explaining:

“The internet is forever. I want to make my own decisions about the digital footprint I leave behind and i want my daughters to be able to make their own decisions, too,” she said.

According to Nico, educating children on the importance of online privacy will only be achieved when the right language and narratives are used.

She said that when she asks a group of kids who wants to learn about online security, reception isn’t the strongest:

“One or two kids in the room will raise their hands,” she said.

She said however that when she asks children who wants to learn to eavesdrop on phone calls and hack into people’s messages on Facebook, hands typically shoot up:

“By learning those lessons and learning how easy it is to eavesdrop calls and hack into people’s text messages, kids can make their own decisions,” she said.

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