Online privacy

Facebook Privacy

Protecting your online privacy becomes more complicated as our society becomes more technologically advanced.  Keeping up with it all can be very difficult, and the more our society becomes dependent on the web, the less likely they are to always be careful about their information.  For example, now everyone links all their profiles and emails, and stores their information on websites to make things easier.  Wi-Fi can be accessed in so many places, and so many people use it, even if it is unsecure.  But it can be dangerous to do these things.  Entering your credit card information and your personal information each time you want to purchase something online may seem like a hassle, but taking the time to do it can help prevent hackers from retrieving that information.  Making complicated passwords is also another way to protect your online self, and avoid doing things such as online banking on an unsecured Wi-Fi network.  These are just a few suggestions for your overall online privacy, but there are so many more things we now have to be aware of with social media sites.

Social Media Privacy

Social media sites are the easiest way for people to know what is going on in your life.  When you actually think about it, it can be a scary thing.  Facebook changes their privacy settings often, and more often than not users can’t keep up with it, or they don’t realize it.  Some users also just don’t know enough about Facebook and privacy settings to understand how their affected, and what to do to change them.  Not knowing what your privacy settings are can allow others to have easy access to your information.  This may include advertisers, apps you use, affiliates of Facebook, or just random people you don’t want seeing your profile.  Social networks also store the information you allow them access to when you sign up. 

Facebook Privacy

It used to be much easier to keep your Facebook profile private, only allowing your networks or your friends to see it.  In more recent years things have gotten more complicated with the constant changes.  Online safety didn’t always seem like such a big deal, but now there is so much more you can do on Facebook.  There are so many apps linked with Facebook, and you can check-in at different places.  All your posts, whether it be status updates or pictures, show your location at the time of making the post.  And everyone has their school, town, and place of employment right on their page.  Because all this information is available right on my home page, it is important to make sure your privacy settings are set so only the people you want can see your information.  To do this, check your settings at least once a month.  Facebook doesn’t necessarily change their settings every month, but sometimes things can slip by.  So as a precaution, it is a good idea to go through all the settings to make sure they are set to friends only.  Another important thing to manage is your apps.  In the App privacy settings, it is best to go through all your apps and delete the ones you no longer use.  There is also an “Apps Other Users” section, and that is where you allow other users to use your information for their apps.  This allows them to have a better experience, but it also allows apps you’re not even using to store your data.  This is another thing you should constantly check, because you can never be sure what kind of apps your Facebook friends are using. 

Twitter Privacy

Twitter doesn’t have all the privacy settings that Facebook has.  Twitter still collects your data, same as all the other social media sites, but you agree to that when you choose to use social media.  However, you do have the option to have public tweets or protected tweets.  Public tweets are visible to everyone, and anyone can choose to follow you.  If you protect your tweets, only those you allow to follow you will be able to see your tweets.  Twitter is meant to be used for a public conversation, hence the creation of the hash tag, so it is best utilized with a public account.  However, there is the option to add your location to tweets, so you should be mindful of that when your tweets are public. 

This post was written by Kim Mlodzinski. Kim is currently a student at Bentley University and is majoring in Marketing. She is currently an intern with NetLZ.