San Diego Local Community News

For many of us, social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have become integral to our daily lives, either to stay connected with friends and family, or simply to pass the time. We may often overlook the negatives associated with the information that we choose to post online. While most of what we post can be considered harmless, there are people who search for vulnerabilities and ways to access your personal information.

Here are just a few suggestions to help you protect your online identity:

• Privacy and security settings exist for a reason. Take some time and understand what information is being shared and with whom. Often the information we’re posting goes out to more than just our circle of friends. Adjust settings accordingly. A google search for privacy settings for your given social media platform will provide you with specific information as to what you’re currently sharing and how to adjust privacy controls.

• Keep in mind that once something is posted, it’s pretty much there for all eternity. Facebook, for example, has settings regarding how your data is to be handled after your death. If you take no action, the data remains as your legacy. If you’re wondering, you can request that old information be removed from a given social media platform, but there is no requirement for the company to comply.

• If you are currently in the job market or likely to embark on a job- search in the future, consider how extensively social media is used in the hiring process.

• 70 percent of employers use social media to screen candidates.

• 57 percent of employers are less likely to interview a candidate they can’t find online.

• 54 percent of employers have decided against hiring a candidate based on Social Media profiles.The above findings from a Harris Poll commissioned in 2017 are reported on A representative sample of over 2,300 private sector hiring managers and human resource professionals were surveyed.

• Know and manage your friends. Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know. They may be looking to gather personal information from what is being posted. That information could be used to access other online accounts, to create new accounts impersonating you (cloning) and to generally wreak havoc both online and in the real world.

For additional information, the National Cyber Security Alliance has an excellent web site

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