ATLANTA - Facebook is popular among people of all ages, but a growing number of sites are popping up designed for a younger audience. Should you let your young child join social networking sites and if you do what should you look out for?
Social networking sites are hard to avoid. But the most popular one, Facebook, is restricted to a certain age group. If you have a child 12 and under what do you do? Do you let them lie about their age and sign up for Facebook anyway or do you go to site specifically for their age group?
An internet expert and the founder of a kid's social networking site say they both have similar concerns.
But is social networking a good idea for your child? We talked to certified information security expert Ben Halpert, who's written a children's book about the internet. And he says it's your choice, but before you give you child the mouse, do your homework.
"If my child said I want to go to this website because I heard about kidswirl and I heard about Poptropica -- as a parent I want to go and just see what it looks like," said Ben Halpert.
FOX 5 News took a look at a couple of different sites and found some important differences. Kidswirl has an interface similar to that of Facebook and that includes the number of ads, which Halpert says can present a security threat.
"They're curious. They're going to click on anything. So they're going to actually leave the site. They're going to go to third party sites," said Halpert.
Halpert says he advocates children learning about and participating on social networking sites, but parents have to monitor the use.