Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn and other social networks have become an important method for connecting socially. However, while social networks are a great way to stay connected with others, it is important that you do so securely. Cyber criminals increasingly use social networks to target and victimize users. Please be cautious when using these services are remember to keep security in mind.
A Few Tips
- Privacy and security settings exist for a reason: They are there to help you control who sees what you post and manage your online experience in a positive way.
- Once posted, always posted: Protect your reputation on social networks. What you post online stays online. Think twice before posting pictures you wouldn't want your parents or future employers to see. Recent research found that 70% of job recruiters rejected candidates based on information they found online.
- Your online reputation can be a good thing: Recent research also found that recruiters respond to a strong, positive personal brand online.
- Keep personal info personal: Be cautious about how much personal information you provide on social networking sites. The more information you post, the easier it may be for a hacker or someone else to use that information to steal your identity, access your data, or commit other crimes such as stalking.
- Know and manage your friends: Use tools to manage the information you share with friends in different groups or even have multiple online pages.
- Be honest if you're uncomfortable: If a friend posts something about you that makes you uncomfortable or you think is inappropriate, let them know.
- Know what action to take: If someone is harassing or threatening you, remove them from your friends list, block them, and report them to the site administrator.
- When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts, and online advertising are often the way cybercriminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it's best to delete or if appropriate, mark as junk email.
- Own your online presence: Post only about others as you have them post about you. When available, set the privacy and security settings on websites to your comfort level for information sharing. It's ok to limit how and with whom you share information.
Additional tips on socializing securely