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August 13, 2013 > Social Media Security Tips

Social Media Security Tips

Submitted By Newark PD

In an ever-changing social networking landscape, it can be hard to keep up with the latest security threats. The days of managing your social media presence on one or two platforms is over. Nowadays, many people might have Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Snapchat, Pheed and Vine accounts. What's more, these accounts might even interact with one another through third-party apps.

Here are five tips to make sure you have the highest level of social media security:

Ignore Personal Questions
You might think it's cute to come up with your rock star name by combining your first car's make with your mother's maiden name. However, these are two common answers to security questions. Surveys -- popular in the MySpace days but making a comeback on Tumblr and other social media platforms -- are a one-stop shop for data miners who want to access your account. Don't answer these types of questions.

Keep Abreast of Privacy Changes
Social media sites, and Facebook in particular, are always making privacy changes, so review them frequently. Consider setting up a Google alert for news on privacy changes to your favorite social media websites. This will allow you to make the necessary tweaks to keep your information locked down when things change.

Be Careful What You Click
Click-jacking and link-baiting are two increasingly common ways hackers breach security. This works one of two ways: First, you might see a link concealed behind a shorter link, such as "t.co," which might be sent to you with a message like "Is this you?" Another method involves posting a link to an image, video or gallery with a vague description like "check out this awesome video." If you have any doubt about the link, don't click on it, although you can wait for comments and likes to appear so you can see whether it's real. There's no video on the Internet funny enough that you need to compromise your security to see it.

Google Your Apps
Just about anyone can make a social media app. This means that just about anyone can access your private information. The good news is that bad apps tend to get bad reviews quickly. Even taking one minute to search the Internet and see what other users have to say about the latest social networking apps can save you a world of frustration later.

Perform Quarterly Security Audits
Once every quarter, go through your security settings, likes and public profiles. Check to see what you're sharing with the outside world. Make sure that you're not sharing private photos and updates through third-party apps, for example, or feeding a private Instagram account to a public Twitter feed. Review privacy policies. Change your passwords and make sure that your new ones are as secure as the old.

Don't get complacent just because it seems everyone else is less vigilant about social media privacy these days. It takes only one breach or embarrassment to create a problem that might be very hard - if not impossible - to undo.

Source: Nicholas Pell

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