Do you know that potential employers are now scanning social networking sites to know more about their applicants? You should be aware of this fact so you can use it to your advantage in this explosive age of computer technology.
If your online integrity is damaged by your slapdash posting of updates in these networking sites, then you can be certain that your application would be turned down even before you get interviewed. Identity theft is also very common and online hackers can do irreparable damage with the vital information they have in their hands. Protecting yourself on a social networking site is therefore crucial. The following are pointers on how to do this.
Common sense would dictate that you keep your username and password safe and secure. Do not reveal it a friend or a friend’s friend. Always opt for the manual password inputting on a public computer. If you have a personal computer, create a guest option for web browsing in case a friend wants to use it.
You should not post your telephone number, address, place of work, names of children, and name of spouse in your profile. If there is sufficient information provided in your profile, online criminals can use them to hack your bank account, PayPal account, websites or your other networking sites. If you decide to use your true name, then leave all the other significant information blank. You have the option to do so.
Choose your social networking site wisely
There are many social networking sites online but you should stay only with a few trusted sites. Unless you are into online marketing, be contented with one or two reliable sites. This would be enough for regular online socializing and the like. Think of these sites as big rooms where you get to meet people, and it is wise to join only people whom you personally know.
Set your privacy settings properly
All social networking sites have privacy settings that you can edit to suit your preferences. Make sure you have ticked on the list to display your updates only to close friends and family. Remember that your friends’ friends can also read your updates if you have programmed your privacy settings accordingly. Go over the items carefully and do not tick any that would reveal to other users more that you would like to.
Accept friends’ requests or link connections judiciously
Accept only those whom you personally know. Remember that their friends could view your profile and to some extent your personal information, so protect yourself by accepting only friends whom you trust. You could visit their profiles to double check if they are who they claim to be.
Be careful of what you post
You have to remember that once you have posted it, it will remain even if you have deleted it later. Other people may have saved the pages in their computers and there is no way you can delete them there. Also, request your friends to ask your permission first before posting any of your pictures or personal stuff. There are several cases of employers firing their employees because of inappropriate photos or slanderous articles seen at networking sites. Do not be one of these casualties. Avoid posting also personal activities like “going to the bank,” “leaving the house,” and similar lines. You are giving out information which could endanger your personal safety.
Signing up for these social networking sites is a great way of socializing, but you should know how to protect yourself from predators, hackers and ill-meaning persons.