How to control privacy while social sharing?

Besides friends and acquaintances, many other people are interested in collecting the information about you on social media websites. Business organizations are always looking for information about customers to gain market advantage and other people like scam artists, stalkers, identity thieves and debt collectors are also on the lookout for personal information. Even, social networking sites are also interested in gathering a variety of data about their users and it is being done to personalize their services for the users and handing over to advertisers as well. That is exactly where the importance controlling privacy while social sharing comes in.

How does information go public?

There are two types of information that can be collected about a user from a social networking site and they include shared information and information collected through electronic tracking. The most common user shared information are age and gender, photos and other media, biographical information, status updates, interests, contacts and geographical location as well. As a user, you can post information as public without controlling access via privacy settings and some information may become publicly visible by default as well. Some social networks can change its privacy policy at any time without seeking the permission of the users and this sudden change can make some of your confidential information visible to the public. Your personal information can be tracked electronically by using cookies as well.

How to control privacy?

Many people skip over the privacy policy when they decide to register with a social network and you should never sign up with a network before reading the privacy policy. The privacy policy section clearly explains how the network collects and uses your personal information and you should also go through the terms and condition section as well. It is always advisable to use a strong password completely different from the passwords that you use for other sites and when you are asked to provide security questions, you need to use information that others are not aware of. Providing a work-related email to a social media site is not at all appreciable and you can create a new email for your social media accounts. It is absolutely essential to keep a strong antivirus and spyware protection on your computer and you should provide the information that you feel comfortable providing because once posted information cannot be taken back. You should always be alert towards the changes in the policies of a social networking site and clicking on shortened links needs to be done with great care. You can use a URL expander before clicking on these types of links and a cautious approach should be taken towards pop-up windows as well. When you leave a social media site, you should delete all cookies and friends request should only be accepted after having done proper verification and research.

You need to remember the fact that whatever you post on social networking sites is not temporary and everything that you post can be cached, copied and stored to follow you forever. That is exactly where the importance of all these guidelines comes in and you should follow them in strictly to protect your privacy while social sharing.

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