Don’t Tell Everyone it’s your Birthday – Online Security

couple of French bulldogs on birthday party.

Most people can be a little short sighted, lazy or careless when thinking about online passwords. A common problem is using the same password for multiple accounts. You might devise a password, for instance, before using it across Facebook, Twitter, your email address… and even your bank account.

This has obvious ramifications, but the problem becomes all the bigger depending on how you come up with a password. For the sake of memorability, most people will choose simple information about themselves as a password. They might use their birthday, for instance, or the name of a child or family pet. And when these details are given away on Facebook, it makes you all the more vulnerable to having your account hacked into.

Don’t be most people – choose something different and don’t just have one password for all accounts. We also advise against putting information like your date of birth on Facebook; with other information like pet’s names to hand, it becomes easier for thieves to put 2 and 2 together… before breaking into your bank account.

Alternatively, brush up on your privacy settings to ensure you know who’s seeing your personal information. Most social media platforms do offer privacy settings and other security features, but most people just don’t use them either through ignorance or not being bothered enough to do anything about it. Don’t be most people.

Besides passwords, there are a number of ways you might be endangering yourself and those you care about via social media. At the same time, there are many ways to protect yourself and those around you.

For example, it can be unwise to put your children’s names and details on a social media site. You could be putting them in danger. While you may have set your account to be for friends only, it can be easy to lose track of them, especially if said list grows to unwieldly proportions. There are also no guarantees that their accounts are secure against hacking.

Another sure-fire way of protecting yourself is keeping details of holidays private. Telling everyone that you are you are off to Ibiza for two weeks on holiday, (or for the Facebook photoshoot – see our earlier post for reference) is just asking for someone to come round and break into your house. Similarly, it’s best not to post photos of your trip whilst on holiday. They will probably know what to steal from all the photos you’ve posted, too.

Finally, it’s an extreme example, but we do not recommend posting photos of your credit cards or important documents online. A recent case saw a Facebook user become a victim of theft. The cause? Posting a photo of their credit card on Facebook.

So don’t be most people; keep you and your loved ones safe, by not sharing too much on social media.


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