Protecting your privacy online

Desk with computer, camera, notepads and chargers

Image: unsplash.com

Do you worry about your privacy online? These days I am proper hot on protecting my identity as much as possible. Obviously as I have this site, Linked In and Twitter amongst other social networks people have a good idea on who I am. However, there are lots of details I want to keep private, you never know what weirdos look at your site. I detail the steps I go through in keeping myself safe.

Google yourself
I do this occasionally, however, just to see what is out there about me and check anything I don’t know about.

Location Status
I always turn my location status off. Every post I upload does not have the location status unless it is a place I don’t go to often like the London Eye. This is because I do not want people to see where I live down to the exact coordinates. Especially in the case of Instagram where this can happen. I never give away my exact location on social media either. For example on Twitter I write that I live in the West Midlands. This, is true but the West Midlands is a pretty big region. Even on Facebook where my privacy settings are at it’s highest, I don’t have the name of the exact place where I live.

Ramp up the privacy settings
On Facebook, I have ramped up the settings quite considerably to the extent that I could not find myself on Facebook when I did a quick google search! I also clear my friend’s list out quite regularly – you know when someone should go when you cannot even remember where you have met them! My Twitter isn’t private but I like above I don’t have where I live or my birthday or even where I work. No one needs to know my birthday!

Linked In is a bit harder because you can up the privacy settings but if you are looking for a new job then it will make it harder for people to link in with you if you don’t give them many details. My birthday and marital status is only for those linked to me. I don’t put in anything that doesn’t need to be on Linked In. If people add me, I check if either if I know then, am related to me in some way (such as working in the same place as me or similar field) I will accept, anyone else I decline.

Google + Again I have hidden my marital status, birthday and where I study.

Photography
If I take photos before I put them online I check that there isn’t any landmarks that can identify where I live. Be careful that your background doesn’t contain any post that can give away addresses.

In the home
Privacy doesn’t just stop online. I shred all documents with my address on it, especially important if you live in a flat and numerous people have access to your bins.

These steps are not exhaustive but go along way in protecting you and others. Do you have any tips to share below?

 

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