9 Take control of your internet identity (Professional and Social)
Our Internet identity, both on professional and social networks and websites is considered as an active presentation of oneself. Internet users are responsible for controlling their internet identity by knowing what information they want to share. Avoid sharing less-than-ideal materials, and create a web profile that enhances your professional and personal image.
The disclosure of your professional and social identity may present a certain number of issues related to privacy. However, there are a number of strategies that can be adopted to control the level of disclosure.
- The notion that not having Facebook or LinkedIn profiles makes you safe is FALSE
Having no account on social media networks does not mean that you are totally safe from internet predators. The internet provides other means for predators to acquire user’s personal information to take on and use the user’s identity to engage in various internet crimes such as financial transactions.
- If you don’t have accounts or profiles in social media, someone can assume (i.e. steal) your online identity and present themselves using your identity
An online predator is an Internet user who exploits other users' vulnerability, often for financial purposes. These predators can utilize your online identity and present themselves as you on various social media networks if you have no account and conduct internet crimes and illegal financial engagements without your knowledge. It is relatively easy for these predators to create online identities on various social media networks to assume or take on the identities of those who do not have accounts on these social media networks.
- It is recommended that you have a profile and manage it personally
In order to avoid identity theft on social media networks, it is recommended to have a profile which you can manage personally. Use the privacy and security settings on social networks to your advantage. Control who sees what you post and manage your online experience in a positive way. Be cautious about how much personal information you provide on social networking sites. The more information you post, the easier it may be for predators to use that information to steal your identity and access your data.
- Present yourself the way you want others to see you
Your social media profiles are a window for the world to discover the person you really are. Particularly if you are an avid social media user, you will probably see the opportunities that these platforms bring to you as a positive. Your social content can influence your employment, education, and potential future relationships. You need to be in control and consider what you are saying and how it comes across to various social media users.