HENRICO COUNTY, Va. - A Henrico mother is outraged after a family photo she posted on Instagram turned up on a stranger’s account with a demeaning caption and slew of outrageous hashtags.
"This has taught me a lesson," Ciara Logan, who regularly posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, told CBS 6 senior reporter Wayne Covil.
The IT specialist and mother of an eight-year-old son and twin two-year-old girls said she was recently disheartened by a discovery she made online.
Logan said with the thousands of pictures being posted on Father's Day, parents need to be extra careful where they post their pictures -- and the settings they use on the different social media sites.
Logan said she loves using Instagram to share pictures of her family with friends and relatives, naively believing she had no need to change the default privacy settings.
So when she saw a stranger had liked three pictures on her page, none featuring her children, she decided to check out his page. That's when she made a shocking discovery.
"As I scrolled through his pictures, I saw this picture of my children," Logan said.
That photo she had taken of her children just two weeks before, now featured a large caption -- or meme -- complete with hashtags.
"To insinuate that my son is a pimp -- or that my son is selling cars -- because he has on a suit and he has two little girls with him -- or to hashtag, "keep him away from those girls," as if to say my son is a predator," she said. "He's an eight-year-old boy who is very caring, very loving, very nourishing, very protective of his sisters."
That's a sentiment her mother, Louise Logan, agrees with.
"To have someone display my grandchildren, with so much negative connotations and distastefulness.... I was just in awe, and it needs to stop," she said.
Once Logan spotted the meme featuring her children's photo, she contacted the poster who she said immediately blocked her, changed his page to private and also changed his user name.
As a result, she contacted Instagram, who instructed her to remove all her children's pictures from her account as a precaution.
Logan has now made her Instagram account private and has advice for other parents who want to post photographs of their little ones.
"My message is share them with the ones you love via text message," she said. "Get a page that is for family only, and private your page."
CBS 6 reached out to Instagram for comment Sunday afternoon, but as of 8 p.m., the station has not heard back.