Tips to stay safe on Social Media

With more and more Australians using social networking sites, criminals are finding is easier and easier to obtain your personal information. The following list is information you should consider to protect yourself on these platforms.

Check your settings
Facebook constantly make changes the platform – and unless you read their updates or updates from your friends, what is private one minute is public the next. It’s worth spending some time to go through your settings on all your Social Media platforms and adjust where necessary; you may be sharing more than you intended.

Be smart about your password
It can seem obvious, but try not to use the same passwords on all of your accounts. It’s also important to be mindful of the types of security questions you set, and try and change them frequently. Passwords that have a combination of upper and lower case letters, and numbers and letters are the safest to use.

Be aware of where you sign in from
Check that the computer that you sign in from doesn’t store your email address and password. It seems simple but often it’s easy to accidentally choose it to ‘remember you’. Make sure you have the appropriate privacy settings on your browser.

Be careful what you say
Make sure that what you say in status updates and comments is something that you would be comfortable seeing on the front page of a newspaper. Once you post it, anyone that sees it can copy and post it elsewhere, or take action based on it. Do you really want everyone to know that you will be all alone at home tonight or away next week?

Protect your mobile device
Be mindful about who might have access to your mobile phone. Many phones today have apps that connect you into many social networking sites such as Facebook. Therefore, if you use these apps, make sure you log out of them when you are no longer using them, or put a password on your phone so only you can access these apps.

Monitor suspicious activity
Watch out for suspicious activity on your Wall, News Feed, Inbox, Shorten Links or Direct Messages. Never, ever click on suspicious links. Before you click, look closely! Does the site look authentic? If in doubt, don’t click on it. If friends start receiving spam from you or status updates appear that you didn’t make, your account may have been compromised. If you think this has happened, immediately change your password.

Some information for this blog has been sourced from avg.com.au and facebook.com

Image credit webtreats on Flickr

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