These days, it feels as if there are a million ways to share every single aspect of our lives: from meals to workouts, home improvements to outdoor adventures, fur babies to our real babies.

But by now, we all know that we must take extra care when sharing photos and videos of our kids. There are irresponsible (and some downright sinister) people out there who may intercept and misuse what we share in ways that would be horrifying to imagine.

Well, what’s our alternative – stop sharing altogether?

Absolutely not!

We refuse to let the bad guys win. So we’ve put together this quick rundown of the safest ways to share your kids’ photos and videos with your loved ones.

Mind you, each option here does have its pros and cons. But together, they should provide a comprehensive list of secure sharing methods you can choose from – depending on what you’re sharing and whom you’re sharing it with.

Going old-school: physical photos

We hardly do this any more, but probably the safest way to share photos of your kids is to print them out – over a secure network, of course – and send them to your intended recipients via your good old local postal service. That’s right – in this case, old is totally gold.

What we love:

  • No technology required – great for elderly relatives who are less tech-savvy.
  • It’s more than just a picture. It’s a gift – a physical keepsake that can be framed to brighten up the homes of friends and family, young or old.
  • It’s one of the safest options available. It’s hard to reshare as there’s only one copy for its intended recipient; and of course, it’s totally hacker-proof.

What we don’t love:

  • You need to make multiple copies for multiple recipients, which will incur added cost.
  • Extra time and effort needed to physically send the photos, which take longer to arrive.
  • Physical photos can be damaged or lost, but of course can be reprinted from digital files.
  • You can’t send videos. (Yes, videos can be sent on discs or flash drives – but would require a separate device to view and add too much complexity here).

It’s a snap: chat apps

Messaging apps like Signal, WhatsApp or Apple iMessage are some of the most popular ways people use to share photos and videos of their kids. They all feature end-to-end encryption so all photos and videos can be sent easily, quickly and securely.

What we love:

  • Instant delivery.
  • Uses apps that you and your recipients already have installed and are comfortable using – zero learning curve or inconvenience.
  • Both photos and videos can be sent and viewed on the same app.
  • Some messaging apps allow you to send disappearing messages to limit the time your photos and videos are made available to recipients. This reduces the likelihood of resharing and increases security.

What we don’t love:

  • You need to make sure all your recipients are using the same messaging app.
  • It can be messy if you want to revisit or organize older photos and videos that you’ve shared.
  • Photos and videos are usually auto-saved to your recipients’ phones. If the phone is lost or hacked, the private content you shared may get leaked.
  • Messaging apps make it easy to reshare content, so there’s a higher likelihood that whatever you shared may end up in the wrong hands.
  • Some messaging apps compress files for sharing, so they may end up being low-quality.

A great balance: cloud storage

Sharing physical photos is more secure but less convenient. In contrast, sharing over messaging apps is more convenient but less secure. Between these two, a cloud storage service like Treasure offers a good balance of security and convenience.

This can be a good option especially if you’re sharing content that you want to safeguard more carefully – such as a photo of your kids in front of their school.

What we love:

  • This is a very secure sharing option as only your intended recipients with the correct password can view the photos and videos you share.
  • Your recipients won’t need to install any additional app to view what you share.
  • It’s easy to share large albums or heavy video files because all you need to send is a link for your recipients to visit.
  • You can organize your photos and videos in folders so both you and your recipients can easily keep track and view them again at any time.
  • This is an online backup with significant storage space that also protects your precious memories from being accidentally lost should anything happen to your phone or computer.

What we don’t love:

  • While it adds an important layer of security, the need for a password to view your kids’ photos and videos makes it slightly less convenient for your recipients.

Especially now when travel is so restricted, it’s more important than ever to stay connected and keep your loved ones updated on what’s happening in your life, including your kids’ many growing-up milestones. We hope one (or more) of these 3 safe ways to share will let you do so with minimal worries.