A Quarter Of Babies Have An Online Presence Before They're Born

14/10/2010 10:57 | Updated 22 May 2015

From uploaded scan pictures to pre-birth email addresses: a quarter of babies now make their debut on the worldwide web before their mums have even given birth.

And by the time they reach the age of two, more than three-quarters of children now have some kind of online presence, with photos, facebook pages and twitter identities.

The figures are revealed by internet security company AVG, which surveyed mothers across Europe, North America, Australia and Japan.

It found that the average 'digital birth' of children happens at around six months, with more than one third have information and photos online from birth.

When asked what motivated them to post images of their babies, born or unborn, on the internet, more than 70 per cent of the mothers surveyed said it was to share with friends and family. One-fifth of mums said they wanted to 'add more content to their social network profiles', and 18 per cent said they were 'simply following their peers'.

AVG's chief executive officer, JR Smith said: 'Our research shows that the trend is increasingly for a child's digital birth to coincide – and in many cases pre-date – the real ones. A quarter of babies have scans posted online before they have even physically come into the world.'

'It's completely understandable why proud parents would want to upload and share images of very young children with friends and families. At the same time, we would urge parents to think about two things.

'First of all, you are creating a digital history for a human being that will follow him or her around for the rest of their life. What kind of footprint to you actually want to start for your child, and what will they think about the information you've uploaded in the future?

'Secondly, it reinforces the need for parents to be aware of the privacy settings they have set on their social network profiles. Otherwise, you may be sharing your baby's picture not only with your friends and family but with the whole online world.'

Have you posted scan pics for friends and family to see?

Suggest a correction