. FB request from child!

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  • Updated 6 months ago
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My friend just received a Facebook friend request from her child who is only seven. I’m afraid this is a hack or her not being properly supervised with computer access. I also worry about a trail for potential traffickers and money scammers. Please respond!
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Jane Shipley

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Posted 6 months ago

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Hi Jane!
I can definetely understand your concern!! I am not a Compassion staff member. However, I know you probably do not want to wait until Monday for a response! Here are a few blog posts/Support page posts that may be helpful. 



Do those help answer your questions at all? I can reassure you that Compassion is very secure and that this is not a hack in their system. However, if it is from your friend's child and is legit, please tell your friend not to respond - contact can only be made through Compassion.   Tutors at the child's center can talk with him/her and discourage them from using social media at such an age to contact their sponsors.  I am sure he or she (or their parents) are just anxious to connect with their loving sponsors. :) 

I am so sorry your friend is experiencing this, Jane!
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Craig Dayton

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Jane...  I would have to agreed with AMS.  I would just add this.  I was in IT support for 25 years, so I can spot an issue pretty fast.  So, all I would add is to tell your friend to, in no way, reply to that FB request.  Compassion is rather secure.  FB, on the other hand, is a sewer.  I get these sort of things from real friends on FB.  Even had one this week.  But, I can spot them pretty fast.  I simply went to the person and said..."did you really send this to me".  Of course, the answer was "no".  That's my two cents.
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Christina, Employee

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Hi Jane! I’m so sorry for any concern or confusion this situation may have caused. We appreciate you reaching out for help! AMS and Craig have great answers!

In this very connected, digital age, there is a possibility that a sponsored child will contact their sponsor through email and/or social media, especially on Facebook. Compassion strongly advises that sponsors not respond to the communication. It is important for the child to respect and follow Compassion guidelines as well as honor the privacy of the sponsor. These contacts may develop into potentially problematic situations for Compassion and the sponsor. In order to protect both parties, Compassion does not allow direct contact between children and their sponsors. We are committed to confidentiality and privacy and can only ensure this with communication solely through Compassion. Though it may be exciting to receive a social media friend request from your sponsored child, there is no guarantee that it actually is your child who is trying to contact you. Please ask your friend to decline and to contact us so we may gently remind the kiddo of our guidelines. 

The blog AMS shared is very helpful! You may also want to share with your friend what our Letter-Writing FAQs say about contact outside of Compassion from your child. Please let us know if you have any additional questions or concerns. Have a blessed day!