3 Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy


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As personal privacy online has become a bigger issue to many people, here are three quick things that you can do to help protect your privacy when using social media sites: 

Minimize Your Digital Footprint

Avoid providing personal content, such as your birthday, address or phone #.  Some sites will allow you to include the month and day that you were born without including the year.  That’s a great way to help protect minors from being identified as such while still allowing everyone to get birthday wishes from their friends.

The less information that you provide to people, the less ammunition they will have to use against you!

Improved Password Management

What do your passwords and your toothbrush have in common?  Neither should be shared and both should be changed frequently for best results.  And while it may be a pain, avoid using the same password for all of your sites.  That way, if someone does figure out your password to one site, they won’t have access to all of your accounts.

Related to your password, avoid leaving yourself signed into a site when you walk away from the computer or stop using it for any length of time.  It only takes a moment to sign back in and you eliminate the risk of someone else using your computer as you.  This not only keeps your private information and online discussions private; it also prevents someone from posting something online as a joke or to be malicious in your name.

Regularly Check Your Privacy Settings

Finally, be sure to check your privacy settings often.  Some sites change their policies from time to time and you need to make sure that your account’s settings meet your needs as that happens.  Facebook, for example, distinguishes between past posts and future posts, so be sure to review both choices.

There you have it – three quick and easy things that you can do to help protect your online privacy.

Joe Yeager is a marketing analyst and social media administrator for a leading B2B manufacturer in the professional dental market. He is also a freelance writer and adjunct faculty member. Please follow him at @JosephMYeager.