All over the news we’ve heard about the recent Kim Kardashian robbery at gun point while she was traveling in Paris. Kim used social media to let her fans know her every movement—even posting where she was staying, and when and where she was alone. She found out in a very dramatic way that this wasn’t the best practice! Kim’s robbery has caused many to re-evaluate their own social media habits and how they affect personal safety.
Often we don’t think twice about posting our upcoming travel plans, “checking in” at distant locations or sharing travel photos during our trip. By doing this, we are essentially broadcasting when our home is empty and ripe for burglary! If we’ve been posting this way in the past, we should change our behavior in regard to social media and realize how our posts can directly affect our safety and security.
We’d like to share a few tips on how to keep safe while still having fun on social media:
- Your Social Security Number or the last four digits
- Home address
- Home phone number (mobile or business numbers are fine)
- Birth date
- Birth city
- Passwords, PINs or any financial account numbers
- Dates you will be away traveling
- Photos while traveling
- Use your privacy settings- they are available for a reason and can block sensitive information from the public, while keeping the fun with your friends
- Friend people you actually know– it’s not a popularity contest
- Limit access to “Friends” you really don’t know – not every “Friend” is a true friend
- Share your amazing travel photos once you are back from your trip
- Verify then trust – not the other way around! Be certain you are on a real website by looking at the URL to see if it makes sense before sharing information.
- Share sensitive information only on secure sites. You can verify this by the “https” or sometimes a padlock icon in the URL.
- What you post on the internet is permanent
- If you don’t use privacy settings, your posts are all public and your information can be used for nefarious purposes
- Educate yourself on site privacy policies
- If something doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t
- Protect yourself – Don’t click on attachments from people you don’t know. This is a way malware and malicious viruses infect your computer
First County Bank wants you and our customers to have fun with social media and to use these communication channels in a safe manner.