JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Jacksonville mother is doing everything she can to shut down a social media account she says is exploiting her disabled child for online donations.
Before she even knew the photographer had posted them, Shakeya Miles said professional pictures of her daughter, who lives with Pfeiffer syndrome, had already gone viral.
Then, a Facebook account claiming to be a man from Jamaica stole and posted the pictures on his own page – claiming her child is theirs, she said.
“That makes me feel very angry," Miles described. "Because, why? Why do something like that?”
The post also includes a link to a PayPal account.
“I felt like he used my baby's medical condition to get money," she said. "And not only he did me, he did other parents like that too with their children.”
If you scroll down his page, it appears the Facebook account is using hundreds of pictures of disabled people to get viral attention.
Miles has reported the alleged fraud to Facebook and PayPal to try and get the accounts taken down.
The only other action she can take is reporting it to law enforcement, CEO and president of Identity Theft Countermeasures Group Tyler Wildman said.
“The police department, even FBI – they all have crimes divisions that deal with these types of digital crimes," he explained.
Wildman recommends that parents understand the arrangement before a professional photography session.
“Ask, who has the rights to this? How can this be used?" he said. "Typically, things like that are set forth in some sort of contract from the photographer.”
He added that you could even ask the photographer not to share the pictures online.
Tracking software and virtual private networks, Wildman said, are other tools that parents can use to keep you and your children’s personal pictures and information safe.