This paper will argue that a major problem for young people today is that they increasingly cause adults anxiety. This anxiety translates into a raft of interventions and strategies and programmes that target young people. These imaginings reflect and constitute a range of anxieties about the dangers posed by some young people, or to some young people, and how these risks might be economically and prudently managed. These institutionalized relationships of mistrust can have a range of often negative consequences (intended or otherwise) for individuals and populations of young people. I argue that Foucault's work on disciplinary, sovereign and governmental forms of power provides a generative framework for analysing what I refer to as the institutionalized mistrust, surveillance and regulation of contemporary populations of young people.