Social media can be a bit like high school. Everyone is clamoring to solidify their identity while forming groups and publicly dismantling the identities of anyone they don’t like.
Another thing social media has in common with high school is that some of the people on it seem oblivious to the internet privacy consequences of ill-advised behavior. If you’re like most people who are concerned about privacy online, you probably have friends who aren’t as security savvy as you.
This can create problems in digital social settings, especially when your friends don’t know what are social media security risks and what aren’t. How do you tell your friends that you think they’re cruising for a malware bruisin’ without hurting their feelings? Just send them a link to this article. That should do the trick.
Social Media Privacy Mistakes Your Friends Don’t Know About
Have you ever been out in public with a friend or acquaintance who didn’t know the social norms or rules? At bars and restaurants, it can be embarrassing. On the internet, it can cost you your valuable privacy, get your bank account hacked, destroy your computer, and even compromise the physical security of yourself and others.
1. Sharing Personal Info
When you’re socializing online, and especially when meeting new people, it can be tempting to give up phone numbers, email addresses, physical addresses, and more in open settings. If you’ve done this, it’s embarrassing. If you see your friends doing it, it can be terrifying since they already have your info- so what’s to stop them from sharing yours too?
If you have an online presence, a business, or a family and children- geotagging is a big no-no. Geotagging means sharing the physical location of a person, home, or event. We know that there are predators online looking for children that they hope to find IRL, and geotagging is one way they do it. Many phones automatically geotag photos. So make sure to turn that feature off before posting images.
3. Loose Privacy Settings
According to a survey by Experion, just 44% of social media users use their privacy settings fully or correctly. Every social media site has options you can choose to use to protect yourself both from corporate data mining and individual hackers. Social media privacy laws require that such options are available. But too many people just use these sites as-is.
4. Accepting Strange Friend Requests
Sure, it can be tempting to click “accept” when someone using the image of a winsome-looking person sends you a friend request. However, approved “friends” have more access to your data than everyone else. It’s similar to taking a call from a telemarketing scammer and giving them all your personal data, more understandable, but similar.
5. Quizzes & Games
Quizzes and games are fun and are frequently recommended by friends. But they are a security risk. 9 times out of 10, they are probing your profile and your computer while you labor to discover what fantasy animal you are.