School District Issues Warning to Parents After Pleasanton Students Targeted on Instagram

Students have been sent messages asking for 'inappropriate pictures.'

Screenshot of Instagram website.
Screenshot of Instagram website.
The Pleasanton Unified School District sent a letter to parents on Thursday warning them of Instagram messages being sent to students asking for "inappropriate pictures."

According to the letter, the police department has been notified and is investigating the messages. Police say these types of investigations can take time due to the collaboration needed between social media outlets and the courts.

Read the full letter from the district below:

Dear Parents, 

We would like to inform you about recent Instagram activity that is of concern.  Students have reported that they have received messages from an individual account from outside of our community, requesting that students send inappropriate pictures of themselves in exchange for pictures of the account holder.  Police have been notified and are working with Instagram to determine to whom the account belongs.

When events such as this happen, it is an excellent time to discuss internet safety with your child.  The link below are Internet Safety Tips for Middle School age students from Common Sense Media.  


Thank you for working with us to help insure that our students are safe.

Pleasanton Police released the following information about the investigation of the Instagram messages:

On April 24, 2014, Pleasanton Unified School District administrators alerted the Pleasanton Police Department of suspicious activity occurring on the personal Instagram accounts and other social media platforms of students.

It was determined that the activity actually occurred and began back in January and February of 2014 but was only now being reported by students.

Once alerted, PUSD immediately notified the Pleasanton Police Department. As a result of this information, the Pleasanton Unified School District and Pleasanton Police wanted to inform parents to talk with their student about receiving solicitations to share inappropriate photos on their Instagram accounts and other social media accounts owned by their students.  

The Pleasanton Police have launched an initial investigation into the allegations and are actively interviewing involved parties. These investigations are quite complicated and require a significant amount of time, effort and collaboration from social media outlets and the courts. Because we are in the early stages of the investigation there is no additional information to share at this time and due to the ages of the involved parties no names or school locations will be released.  

Pleasanton Unified School District and the Pleasanton Police are asking for anyone or any parent with information regarding this incident or something similar to call the Pleasanton Police Department at (925) 931-5100. 


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