Social media has become a significant part of many people’s daily lives. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, TikTok and Snapchat provide users with opportunities to keep up with their friends, share life experiences and interact with people from around the world. However, social media can also have detrimental effects.
As you enjoy these apps and websites, you should also be diligent in protecting yourself. Failure to do so could negatively affect your relationships, mental health and even finances. Consider the following tips to ensure the safe use of social media:
Use strong passwords. Your social media accounts can be hacked, allowing perpetrators to access personal information and even impersonate you. Make sure you protect your passwords and refrain from using the same one for multiple accounts. It is also best to change your passwords often.
Activate multi-factor authentication (MFA). Even the most robust passwords may eventually be cracked. By enabling MFA, you can better protect your social media profiles by requiring additional proof of your identity, such as a fingerprint or verification code.
Avoid oversharing. Part of the fun of social media is sharing your experiences with others; however, providing too much information may expose you to cyber criminals as well as in real life criminals. Leave the vacation and road trip posts and check ins until AFTER you get home. Don’t advertise to everyone that your home is empty! Take all the pictures and videos of those amazing memories, and save them for later to post. While your local law enforcement can do safe check ins while you are gone, they can not be there 24/7 to watch your home.
if you live in Chatham Illinois, click this link to check out the Vacation House Watch that our amazing CPD does while you are away!
Check privacy settings. To better protect your privacy and data while using social media, consider adjusting your settings to limit who can see what you post or share.
Beware of fake accounts. Scammers may attempt to connect with you using fraudulent profiles. Limit your interactions to people and accounts that you trust. I’m sure we have all seen the posts from these scammers that post that they found a dog, or a dog is hurt, etc., and they turn the comments off of the post but they tell people to share it to get the animal home. 99.9% of the time these types of posts are fake! They turn the comments off because after a couple weeks, the scammer will go in and edit the post to a product they are selling. Unfortunately it’s not only fake accounts, but accounts of people that you do know that they have been hacked.
By following these guidelines, you can better protect yourself and your loved ones from the potential dangers of the digital realm. Let’s strive to build a safer, more secure online community, where creativity and connectivity thrive without compromising our safety!