Md. family fights for son's privacy after his picture appears on another Facebook page with other
There is a warning for Facebook users. Your pictures may be popping up on random websites and you don't even know it.
A local Bowie family found their 3-year-old son's picture on a Facebook page they had never seen.
Margie Burgess told us her Facebook privacy settings are all in line, so she can't figure out how her son's picture ended up on a page filled with pictures of other children along with some gruesome photos.
Videos of Burgess' son Harvey bring a smile to her face. While the family helps the 3-year-old battle a rare form of epilepsy at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Burgess is also fighting for his privacy.
"I found a picture of Harvey after he was just released from the hospital, and my newborn, and I was shocked," she said.
Burgess posts pictures and videos of Harvey on a Facebook support group page on a regular basis. That was until a friend came across a picture of Harvey on a page belonging to someone named Tiberius Alecu from Romania. She recognized other children from her support group and found bizarre pictures of body parts. The page didn't make sense to her.
When she confronted Alecu online, she said, "After three days of him ignoring all the comments, and then when he did respond being very nasty, Facebook finally took action today."
But Burgess had to do some digging to make that happen.
"You can report violations of your own privacy, but I think because it was reporting my child's privacy [being] violated was what did it," she said.
So how do you know your pictures and information are really protected within your group? A privacy expert we talked with says it is nearly impossible.
"If one of your friends within your circle reposted that somewhere else, there is a long trail of ways in which photos can escape the grasps of your inner circle," said Aaron Cohen of Blackfin Security.
Burgess says she will still post pictures, but with a more watchful eye.
Cohen says the Facebook privacy settings are so confusing it is really hard to know if you do have it right. At the end of the day, the advice is the same. What you put on the internet is out there and there is no guarantee it won't end up where you don't want it.