Internet Safety and Privacy Tips
Blogger: Rachel Kent
In a world that is based more and more online, it’s easy to forget that privacy is increasingly harder to come by and is more important than ever. As we see with the celebrities, a glitch in privacy can quickly ruin your reputation. For example, Justin Bieber and his recent pot-smoking party picture and Scarlett Johansson with her leaked nude pictures. You might not have hackers going after your pictures or paparazzi following you to try to capture you in a bad moment, but a post written by you without a lot of thought behind it could turn into something big and threaten your reputation. Once it’s online, it is out of your control.
Here are a few tips on privacy and security from me. I’d love for you to post some of your own privacy practices, too.
1) Think about who your audience is before you post. By “audience” I mean those who are able to see your posts. If you are posting on a blog, your “audience” is the entire world unless you have a subscriber-only blog. If you are posting on Facebook, assume that your friends and friends of your friends will see everything you post (based on a friends-only security setting). Tweets can typically be seen by everyone.
2) Never post anything online that, if leaked, is something you would desperately wish you could take back. Assuming that there is no security is the best way to go when posting online.
3) Change your email passwords frequently. We email SO much information back and forth. Remember the value of that information and make your passwords secure and hard to crack. (Try using a symbol or two.)
4) Be proactive with damage control. Google your name frequently to see what is being said about you and to see what other people see when they search for you. Being an author is about trying to be as public as possible, but you want the right kind of publicity. The kind that leads to book sales instead of a mental breakdown. Do both a regular Google search and an image search too!
5) It can still help to take old posts down. If you regret putting something online, take it down now. You might not be able to erase it entirely, but you can at least start by removing the original source.
6) Remember that your posts can also endanger others and their reputations. Your family and friends are connected to you. Think about them before you post as well.
What tips do you have for us?
Have you ever run into an internet safety issue? How was it resolved?