Let’s face it, these days, social media is a more important part of our lives than ever. The online footprint we leave on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook can affect our lives in the real world, from work to school, to our personal lives. The way we use social media has also shifted over the years—the laissez-faire approach we once had has probably been replaced with a more intentional, considered attitude toward what we upload.
However, those status updates or photos from a night out years ago may still be online, and without actively cleaning them up may be affecting the way you appear to peers, employers, or other important people in your life.
5 top reasons to scan & update your accounts
Here are the top 5 reasons why it’s important to clean up your social media, and why it’s even easier to do so than you may expect:
1. Job seeking
It’s a harsh reality that, whether you want them to or not, potential employers and headhunters look to social media to get a more complete picture of candidates. While your resume, experience, and references may be perfect for a job, if your social media accounts are less-than-professional, you may be putting yourself at a disadvantage.
It’s important to note that while you don’t want anything incriminating on the internet, being a complete “online ghost” can also be a red flag for employers. They are likely looking to social media to get a more complete understanding of you as a person, and the goal is to present yourself on social media in a positive way, including any quirky hobbies or interests you may have! So, there’s no need to make everything private, rather use a social media clean-up tool to ensure your best self is being presented online.
2. Business networking
Perhaps you’re not job-hunting, but instead, already have your dream job. It’s important to consider that clients or contacts may be interested in looking you up on social media. Be honest, have you ever done a quick search to put a face to the name of someone you’ve been professionally emailing with? Whether you are self-employed or representing a firm, social media will inevitably overlap with your work life. While you don’t have to be a total square online, having some intention with the way you appear online can only help you professionally. You’ve likely been considering it for a while, so take this as a hint to finally do that social media clean-up! It can only be beneficial to your work life.
3. University applications
Maybe you’re considering university for the first time, or perhaps you’re looking to upskill with a specialized course or master’s degree. Whatever your next step in education is, it’s a good idea to make sure that your online footprint reflects the ideal candidate that you are!
There are many people on the route to that accreditation that may look up your social media accounts, so it’s important to harness the positive power of social media. A cleanup tool like IDShield’s Reputation Management can make the process quick and seamless, leaving you more time to finish those applications.
Let’s not forget that the purpose of social media is to be, well, social. Your professional life aside, the way you present yourself online can indeed have an impact on your romantic life. For singles, online dating has become the new norm, so looking up the social media of a potential date comes with the territory.
Just like with job hunting, having no online footprint can be a red flag for online matches. The goal is to portray yourself in a positive, well-rounded way, but leave the real “getting to know you” for the date!
For better or worse, the reality is that these days our online presence can go so far as to impact our family members. Old tweets or Facebook posts can come back around, and anything incriminating can indeed be harnessed against your loved ones.
While the purpose of cleaning up your social media isn’t to live in fear of being shamed, there is a responsibility to the people around you to make sure that social media is a tool for empowerment. At the very least, it means your aunts can’t pry too much!
Privacy setting changes
Just as the way we use social media has changed, the platforms themselves have, too. As the terrain of online information has shifted over the years, privacy settings have become more advanced and more widely taken advantage of.
This means, however, that some of your earlier content is perhaps more visible than you realize. That lackadaisical approach to online sharing from 10 years ago may not be how you share today, but the photos and status updates may still be what the people searching your name see.
While going back through a decade of posts can seem daunting (and probably why you haven’t done it yet!), the truth is that there are now faster and easier methods available.
IDShield is here to help
IDShield’s Reputation Management tool takes a sophisticated technological approach to analyze the content that a would-be reviewer sees. The product analyzes your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and TikTok to find any posts, photos or videos that may be harmful to your online persona. The search results are presented in a personalized dashboard, with simple, actionable steps to either approve or delete any flagged content.
Things that we screen for include vulgar language, alcohol consumption, and nudity (your boss probably doesn’t need to see your vacation pics from college!) Instead of wiping out your social media history, the choice instead lies with you on whether to delete, archive, or keep things like tweets and videos.
Going forward, you can seamlessly manage your privacy settings across 20+ accounts and keep rescanning for any updates concerning your online persona. With this valuable tool from IDShield, you can harness the power of social media, and feel empowered using the internet to better reflect you as the person you are today.
So, what are you waiting for? Sign up for IDShield and get started cleaning up your social media today so you can be confident you’re putting your best foot forward online, regardless of the situation!
IDShield is a product of Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc. (“PPLSI”) and provides access to identity theft protection and restoration services. IDShield plans are available at individual or family rates. A family plan covers the named member, named member’s spouse or domestic partner and eligible dependent children under the age of 18. For complete terms, coverage, and conditions, please see an identity theft plan. All Licensed Private Investigators are licensed in the state of Oklahoma. An Identity Fraud Protection Plan (“Plan”) is issued through a nationally recognized carrier. IDShield/PPLSI is not an insurance carrier. This covers certain fraud expenses and legal costs as a result of a covered identity fraud event. See a Plan for complete terms, coverage, conditions, limitations, and family members who are eligible under the Plan.