Social Media Safety

(posted 6/20/2019)

Social media plays a huge part in the way we stay connected with our family, old friends, colleagues or simply provides information to what’s happening in the world around us. However, social media also happens to be an easy way for a hacker to steal your personal information.

 Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are the most popular social networking services at this time. This does not mean that other social networking services such as Tumble, Spaces, Linkedin, SnapChat etc. are not popular, you just do not hear about them as much in today’s world. There are tons of social networking apps/websites out there!

Here are a few tips to help you be as safe as you can with social media:

  1. Use caution when clicking on adds or links within your social media applications. This can cause viruses. Yes, your mobile device can also be susceptible to a virus attack.

  2. Check your profile pages often. Make sure there aren’t things there that you did not post. If you see a post that you did not post yourself, this is an immediate red flag. You should change your password(s) immediately and delete the post. Sometimes, the fraudulent post will tag your friends- which will also make your friend think that it’s ok to click the link “you’ve” tagged them in.

  3. Be careful with posting personal information on your social media sites. It’s easy for hackers or thieves to find out where you are. For example: you post a picture of yourself with a few friends at the beach and tag the beach name. A thief now knows that you’re not at home. They could easily break into your house while you’re gone. A hacker now knows that you’re at the beach; and could potentially have a co-hart at this beach location ready to steal your card information.

  4. DO NOT post your personal information such as address, email, phone number etc. on your social media sites. This gives a hacker just enough information to start researching you.

  5. Always be sure you know the person you are accepting a friend request from. If you receive a friend request from someone that is already on your friends list- call them, shoot them a message etc. to verify that it’s truly them. Ask them questions only they would know the answer to. Do not accept friend requests from people you do not truly know.

  6. Set your profiles to be private if at all possible. If you leave your profile open to the public, anyone in the internet world can view your information.

  7. Customize your privacy options

  8. Try not to post where you work- this can open a door for a criminal to start hanging out where you work. They will make small talk to get to know you and become a “regular”. You may develop some sort of friendship with this person, but before you know it- they have stolen your identity or taken enough information in about you to create a fake social media profile.