Mitigating Risk on Social Platforms

 

The use of social networks is soaring as we look for ways to keep human connections alive, providing even more opportunities for scammers to take advantage of you and potential security risks.

 

When not handled correctly, social media use opens you and your family up to significant privacy risks. Failure to take proactive precautions can lead to cyberattacks, cyberbullying, job loss, and more. 

  • Follow best practices for sharing personal information 
  • Educate yourself on common social media scams 
  • Set privacy controls correctly 
  • Protect your reputation, think before you share 

By taking simple steps to protect yourself and your family, you can enjoy social media safely. From helping you set up proper controls to monitoring your family's profiles for problematic posts, IDShield can help you navigate potential privacy pitfalls and protect your identity. 

Take Control of Your Social Media Footprint

Social media is an integral part of our daily routine, helping us connect and build relationships. With over 2.77 billion social media users, almost everyone relies on the myriad of social platforms from Facebook to Snapchat to Instagram to communicate with their loved ones.

The use of social networks is soaring as we look for ways to keep human connections alive, providing even more opportunities for scammers to take advantage of. While we check out the latest funny meme, TikTok video, or news from our family and friends, we need to keep our personal information protected.

Too many people are oblivious to the privacy pitfalls and fail to take steps to protect their data, setting them up as easy targets to be profiled by advertisers, opening them up to a potential cyberattack, or, even worse, having their identity hijacked.

Think Privacy First

If you don’t activate the privacy protections on each platform, then anybody can view your social media profile and read your personal information. You also need to be aware of some of the creative tactics that cybercriminals are deploying to entice you to share personal details that they can profit from. So, how can you manage not just yours but your entire family’s social media footprint and protect your data?

Don't Accept Every Request to Connect

Rather than gleefully clicking on every request from a new follower or third-party application, always take time to verify each invite. With friend requests, check and block fake accounts or people you don’t know well. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram are full of fake profiles, and those accounts can be a cybercriminal, a suspicious organization, or just a stranger who wants to monitor your activities. If you see any concerning behavior, you should report and block the account. Adopt the mantra that it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

The same goes for third-party apps. Be very careful before accepting requests to link apps to any of your social accounts and make sure to regularly audit which are connected to protect yourself from data-harvesting software. There are multiple examples of this happening from surveillance concerns with WhatsApp to TicTok, which appears to be a messaging app that the New York Times identified as a mass surveillance tool!

Control Your Settings

Look at the privacy and security settings on your social media accounts and make sure that only your approved contacts can see your posts. Be careful about sharing information that reveals too much about you or your family, including changing jobs, going on vacation, or moving to a new house. Make sure that you check the privacy settings of images in addition to text, as that is another loophole that can be exploited.

Think Before You Share

Check your social media profiles and make sure that you are not sharing personal information, including your address, phone number, date of birth, and social security number. Your close friends and family should know these as needed. Also, those quirky polls that ask for random information are often not so innocent and are a way to get you to disclose personal data. So don't make trackable information available to everyone, including cybercriminals. Again, less is more when it comes to your personal information on social channels.

Protecting Your Family's Reputation on Social Media

Don’t forget to make sure your children’s social media activity is not exposing your data. For kids, privacy is a learned behavior, so you need to make sure they are vigilant. With screen time limits removed in response to our new normal and social usage soaring for kids of all ages, this is increasingly important. Taking an active role can help prevent unwanted access to your data or home network coupled with ensuring that a social profile doesn’t come back to haunt your child later in life.

Social media has opened up numerous ways for us to entertain ourselves and keep up with our friends and family. By taking some proactive steps, we can all reap the benefits without lasting damage to our online reputation and identity. At IDShield, we can help you navigate the potential pitfalls and take back control of who can see what you share, watch, browse, or comment on across social media.

IDShield Protection Features Include

  • Dark web surveillance
  • Unlimited consulting with fraud experts
  • 24/7 access for emergency support
  • Monthly credit score tracker
  • Support with credit report disputes
  • Scan your social media for unwanted images and posts
  • Watch your financial accounts for unwanted activity

Blogs, Articles and Other Related Links

Protecting Your Privacy on Social Media - how to Mitigate ID Theft Threats
Protecting Your Privacy on Social Media

There is no shortage of creative ways cybercriminals try to steal your identity. It’s like a game of Whac-a-Mole. As soon as a scam is stopped, another pops up to replace it. And social media is not immune to this problem.

Read more >>

SocialMediaSecurity
Protecting Yourself on Social Networks

Social media networks have become the ultimate space for online connections nowadays. As different networks continue to pop up and present opportunities to share personal information, users need to err on the side of caution.

Read More>>

Data Breaches and Social Media - What's the Impact?
Data Breaches and Social Media - What's the Impact?

Data breaches have been a recurring theme over the last decade and this trend shows no sign of letting up. There is a vast amount of breach data readily available online and this treasure trove for cybercriminals continues to grow.

Read More>>

Girls looking at a phone taking a selfie.
The Dangers of Revealing Your Private Life on Social Media

This caveat includes Twitter, Instagram, Facebook (FB) and YouTube. Here’s a rundown of recent privacy issues associated with some of the top social networking platforms to convince you that caution is needed when socializing online.

Read more>>

social media
IDShield Investigator Tips: Social Media

When It Comes to Staying Safe on Social Media, Listen to Your Mother. Twenty-one percent of adult internet users have had an email or social media account compromised.

Read more>>