How to Safely Share Photos with Your Friends and Family

With valid privacy concerns on the internet, it is important to use some kind of medium that can allow you to safely share photos with your friends and family.

This medium could either be through social media, messaging apps, cloud drives, transfer services and more. Let us take a look at some of these in further detail and how they can help keep your photos secure while also allowing you to share them with people you know.

Cloud Folders


There are several cloud storage providers such as Google Drive, OneDrive and Dropbox, among many others. You can easily make folders on each of these cloud services and share them among your desired circle or group of people.

Usually, in most of these services, the process to do this is more or less the same. By opening up a new folder, you can upload pictures from your device in this folder.

This can also be a great way to back up your pictures on the cloud. If you already have some pictures backed up, you can make folders and share the ones you choose to.

After creating these folders with the photos in them, you can share them with your friends and family by clicking on ‘Share’ and entering their email addresses or by getting a link. While you are doing this, you can also decide the extent of access that your friends and family can have to this folder.

Once they receive this folder, they can view it through their own cloud accounts through any device.

With these cloud services, however, there is limited free space available to you. If you end up using up all the free space, you can purchase more space through the respective subscription plans.

You can also utilize Google Photos or Apple Photos to further streamline your photo-sharing options.

These are usually the common processes involved in sharing photos through these services. Of course, there might be some differences in terms of features and sharing options depending on which service and device you use, so you must figure out which service would be best for you to use.

Facebook Groups

Facebook Groups

Facebook might not be the best option when it comes to privacy, but there are still options that you can make use of to securely and safely share photos among friends and family.

By making a closed or secret Facebook group, you can restrict your photos to stay within the group itself. They can, however, be easily downloaded and re-uploaded by the people who have access to the group.

In order to make this kind of group, go to Facebook and locate the ‘Groups’ window and click on it. When you do so, you will find a button that says ‘+ Create New Group’ that will allow you to form your group.

You can then adjust the privacy settings of the group to ‘Closed’ or ‘Secret’. These will limit outsiders from seeing the contents posted on the group. You can also add the number of people you want to provide access to.

Once you have made this group and determined its privacy, you can upload pictures and albums to the group. This will allow your friends and family to see the photos while also letting them like, react and comment, making it a safe shared space to share photos and similar private content.

Private Social Media

Use social media such as Instagram and Snapchat to safely share photos

You can also use social media such as Instagram and Snapchat to safely share photos. Specifically made to upload photos and share them, these apps can be a convenient way to share pictures with people you know.

With these social media apps, however, you need to make sure that all the people you want to share photos with have access to them through accounts of their own. This might prove to be a restriction as not everyone you know might be on these apps and may be hesitant to create accounts on them as well.

Further, even after you have determined the presence of these people on your social media, you must further make it a point to make your account private so that only a certain number of people can view what you upload.

You also have the option of uploading pictures to your story. This story will then disappear after 24 hours.

One disadvantage of these apps is that you might not be able to share pictures in bulk. For instance, with Instagram, you can only upload ten pictures at a time whereas, with Snapchat, you can only send stories.

You can also use social media such as Twitter and Facebook. Once again, you must adjust your settings to make your account private while ensuring that people have accounts.

Group Chats

Group Chats

Instant messaging apps such as WhatsApp, iMessage, Instagram, Messenger, Telegram, Signal and many more have the option of allowing you to create groups on them.

Through these groups, you can not only send messages and have discussions but also upload multiple pictures and videos such that the people involved in the group can view and talk about them.

On most of these apps, you can click on an option that says ‘Create New Group’ or something along those lines. This will allow you to add the people you want to the group and will keep all the shared content within that group. However, the members of the group can easily download or forward the photos.

The specific features of each of these apps will differ depending on the app. For instance, there might be a restriction to the number of people you can add to a group. For this reason, you should do your research to figure out which app will work best for you. The people should all also have accounts on these apps.

Some of these apps also let you make secret group chats or enable disappearing messages that disappear after a few days. Making use of these will add extra security to the group chat in addition to end-to-end encryption.

Photo-Sharing Apps

Photo-Sharing Apps

There are some apps that focus entirely on photo sharing in combination with safety and privacy, making them ideal for sharing photos safely with your friends and family.

For instance, platforms like Cluster, 23 Snaps, Flickr and SmugMug are some good options that you can try out and make use of. Flickr, for instance, is specifically used for uploading images and restricting access to images based on location and other factors. You can sign up and make a group that you can then upload your pictures.

Similarly, Cluster and 23 Snaps are free options that you can make groups on to upload pictures. You can then share these with your friends and family, removing the concern of public access. Since these are made for private groups and photo sharing, you can make good use of them.

Apps like SmugMug can give you several features and personalization options. However, beyond a certain point, you will need to pay for it to gain access to more advanced options.

These photo-sharing apps can be great choices as you can upload photos in bulk. If you want to adjust your privacy settings, you have the option of doing so through these platforms after which you can invite people you know.

Transfer Services

Transfer Services

You can utilize transfer services like AirDrop and WeTransfer that send photos and videos to other people.

AirDrop is specifically meant for a group of friends or family members who all use Apple devices. If you all turn this service on through your respective phones, you can transfer photos, videos and other media to each other.

However, an important requirement for this is to be physically nearby for it to work properly. Sending large files might also not be entirely possible.

Services like WeTransfer allow you to upload multiple pictures and videos and transfer them to the people you want to send them to. This is a convenient and secure way of sharing. However, the free version of this is a bit more limited, requiring you to subscribe to it by paying a certain amount every month.

You can also simply use your email to send pictures to people up to a certain size. Beyond that, you will get an option to link your cloud services to the email in order to make transfer and access easier. This has already been discussed above.

Concluding Remarks

That brings us to the end of this article. Now that you are aware of each of these photo-sharing options, you can go through the details of each and figure out which one you want to use to share your pictures with your friends and family.

If you prefer more interactive options, then going for social media or messaging groups would be a better idea for you. If not, however, you can simply use cloud folders or transfer services to send across a bunch of photos to each other.

Do make sure to confirm the privacy policies of each of these as well. Once that is done, you are good to go!

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