Facebook Safety: How to Protect Yourself from Online Dangers

Published on March 2, 2012 by joemorris in Social, Technology

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In our world today, it’s likely that you’ve heard of a little website by the name of “Facebook.” And if you haven’t, then you probably have been living under a rock. So with the phenomenon that is the largest social networking platform on the web, we are provided the chance to be more connected than ever before—and although being connected via Facebook allows for convenience, fun and other great opportunities, it unfortunately also fosters the misfortune of encountering individuals who aren’t connected for the same, good intentions as you…

Because the internet creates a place where anonymity is easy to obtain and take advantage of, you never know who you could be interacting with…or who could be checking out every detail of your Facebook profile. So before logging on to post pictures, write on a friend’s wall or “like” the page of your favorite band, be sure to check out the following ways that you can protect yourself on Facebook:

  • Limit the personal information you share:- The whole point of social networking is to be social, right? And being social means sharing information with others…but before you get too carried away with the whole concept, stop and remember that once your information hits the internet, there is the chance that anyone in the world can see it. This is why in the “Info” section of your profile, it is best to only stick to the basics—never include your home address, place of employment, phone number, email or any other personally identifying details that would set you apart from the next person.
  • Choose your friends wisely:- You’ve probably heard this saying since you were a kid, but no matter what your age, it’s one that should be listened to—especially when it comes to choosing ones on Facebook. Sure, it’s fun to rack up the amount of friends on your account to numbers hovering in the thousands—however, when you don’t actually know the people you are friends with on the internet, you could be asking for trouble. To avoid harassment or trickery from strangers lurking on the web, accept friend requests only from those people who you are acquaintances with in real life. And if anyone makes you feel uncomfortable on Facebook, don’t be afraid to cease all communication, block the person and even consider reporting them to the social network.
  • Keep your location undisclosed:- With Facebook you have the opportunity to share with everyone what you are doing, who you are with and exactly what you look like. So think before you use Facebook’s “Check-In” tool, update a status disclosing your location or post a mobile upload of where you are. These bits of information broadcasted on Facebook will give predators or other wrong-doers the information they need to inflict physical harm upon you or burglarize your home when you aren’t there.
  • Use your privacy settings:- The creators of Facebook are well aware of the dangers that come with interacting on the internet so they’ve given you the ability to make your Facebook experience as secure as possible with their privacy settings. You can tailor these to meet your personal needs, but it is suggested that you use the highest possible settings to manage your default privacy, what you post, your tags, what gets shared with websites, how you block/report people and how you share all other information.

Joe Morris is a guest post author who shares with us tips for safely using Facebook. In addition, Joe also owns Best Dating Site where he provides tips for safe online dating.

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