What Are Your Kids Doing On Social Media?

Michael Dell, the founder of Dell Computers, has a daughter who was suspended from Twitter for revealing too many family secrets on the platform.  Providing too many personal details, such as current locations and activities, can be an open invitation to criminals and stalkers, cyber and otherwise.  Here are some suggestions for safe online behavior to share with your children, and consider for yourself.

  1. Geolocation services – these should be turned off or restricted to immediate family members only.  I know how handy it is to be able to see where your kids are on your smart phone, but make sure that everyone else remains uninformed.
  2. Do not include details and times that you are away from home, are alone, or otherwise at risk.
  3. Get permission from everyone in the photo before posting it to Facebook or other online platforms.  Some of us do not want to be tagged.
  4. Let your friends know that you want the same courtesy in return and stick to it with the slow learners.
  5. Use social media sparingly, it is way too easy to spend your whole day online and get nothing else accomplished.

As I have shared in my Community Education social media classes, I am quite promiscuous online, and generally I have been accepting of my friends and family including me in their Facebook updates.  But not everybody shares my point of view.  The Internet has made the concept of privacy a fairly quaint concept, and as we all know, once something lands on the Internet, it is forever.  If you are still someone who values your privacy, you definitely want to consider these ideas. 

The world is a dangerous place, and giving the bad guys free access to our itinerary and other personal information is extremely risky.


About the Author:

I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at http://wyzguyscybersecurity.com

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