Social networking sites are now part of our culture especially when there are more than a hundred of them in cyberspace. While this may increase the number of friends you have, there are certain risks involved which is why you should keep in mind some social networking safety reminders.
Before you decide to join a social networking site, see how it works. Some social networking sites allow only members to view the profiles of other members while there are those that allow anyone even non-members to read it.
Since some people might take advantage of what you put on your profile so it is best to limit this access to people that you know. For instance, this should only be seen by your friends, your team, club, community group and family.
You shouldn’t also post anything that will make people you don’t know look for you like the name of your school, where you frequently hang out or where you work. One way of doing that is by not using your real name, age or hometown when you create your profile.
Don’t make the mistake of putting important personal information about yourself such as social security number, address, phone number or bank and credit card account numbers.
So what information could you post in a social networking site? The answer is simply anything you are comfortable with.
Just remember that anyone can see it. You could talk about your dreams, what you want to be when you grow up or where do you plan to go to college. These examples are safe because it changes so it doesn’t matter if this is saved in other people’s computers.
Another thing that a lot of social networking sites allow you to do is post a photo. You are not required to but if you do, there is another security issue because the picture can be altered and posted in another site that you will not be very happy about.
The main purpose of joining a social network is to make friends. Since you can’t tell if the person is serious or just playing around, you should take some extra precautions. You can do this by asking your friends if they know this individual or simply typing their name in the search engine and see what comes up.
If there are no red flags and he or she wants to meet you, make sure that this is done in a public place and tell someone you know where you are going, who you are meeting and what time you will be back.
Listen to your gut and if at any point you feel uncomfortable, leave immediately. Should this person persist, get help. This matter should be reported to the police and to the social networking site so this individual’s membership is revoked and banned for life.
You should also tell others about your experience so if this person joins another social networking site, their membership will also be revoked. Should others encounter the same person or someone similar, they will know what to do so they don’t become the next victim.
There are risks involved when you meet someone through the web which is why even if social networking is a lot of fun, you should always keep in mind with these safety reminders.