In recognition of today being Safer Internet Day 2016 I asked some of my favourite Periscopers to share their top internet safety tip. My personal tip is to set your own limits with regards to what you share online, the internet can be a dangerous place to overshare so know what is right and wrong. I also encourage all social media users to learn the safety features on the platforms they use. For instance it is so important to know how to block a harmful twitter user and report their tweets when necessary. Similar features are available across most social networks and the Safer Internet Day team have put together some useful internet safety tips here also. If you are a parent or around young people who are using social media please ensure to talk them through this information.
Being safe on the internet is something we all need to be conscious of and it is easy to incoprorate small changes into your internet usage in order to minimise any potential risk. The reality of this is all to clear when we consider how live streaming can leave us more at risk if we don’t take certain safety precautions. As a female Periscoper who often scopes alone in public areas there have been instances where I have felt my personal safety threatened. Others may feel threatened by the vulnerability of broadcasting into the unknown, sometimes we can allow trolls to have this effect on us – but believe me, the block is easy!
What’s in your background!? Always review your background before you post or go live. Over a period of time someone can follow and find the places you regularly visit by monitoring your backgrounds.
Photos from your child’s soccer field. Is the name in view? Now they know where your kids are on weekends. Photos of your kids in uniform; first day at school. Now they know where to find your children. A coffee shop you frequent every Monday? Now the whole world knows where to find you. Accidentally periscope your building name and come home to find someone waiting outside? This happened to me…
What’s in your background is the first safety tip I can give you. And the easiest place for unsavoury types to build a story to track your life.
Do not give out information unless it is really needed. When filling out online forms, the required information should have an asterisk (*) next to it. This means, this information is required in order to submit the form. Many forms will ask you for extra information which isn’t needed, mainly for their customer sales database. Don’t feel the need to fill it all out if it doesn’t relate or help.
My top Internet Safety Tip is to use common sense and be aware. You wouldn’t walk around a public area with a piece of paper attached to your back that has your home address, phone number, and other personal information on it would you? Of course not! You need to be aware that the internet is just another public area. It just doesn’t feel like it because there is a screen in between you and everyone else but in reality it is. So be aware and use common sense. If you wouldn’t share it with everyone at your grocery store or in the shopping mall, you probably shouldn’t share it on the Internet for anyone to see and potentially use.
If you are live broadcasting and showing people around and you do want to share some information like your location, then be aware of the risks of doing so. Literally anyone could use that info to find you. So use common sense and either be in a very public place with other people or have a friend or two with you so you are not alone.
Use common sense and be aware of the info you are sharing, and where you are sharing it.
Change your passwords on a quarterly basis (if not more). Have specific financial passwords and social passwords. It’s a pain but it’s worth it not to have your identity stolen.
Be smart about your children’s internet usage. Limit activity and know what that activity is. The best way to do this is to play with the apps with them.
The most important tip is to use an anti virus software and not only any ordinary software which comes with your notebook. I searched for the best one because I am very active daily online and I use it for banking, programming, business etc. So it needs to be a safe solution. I chose Bitdefender. This software always get prizes. It was chioen to the best internet security software of the year 2015! In the past you had to combine 2-3 softwares in order to get this level of support. This software has everything included in one (Anti-Virus, Anti-Spam Plugin for Mail Clients, Anti Ran Software, Firewall, Safe Banking, Privacy protection, Anti-Malware, Anti-Theft and more) so there are many options which you can individually activate or deactivate.
Thank you to all of the Periscopers for sharing their top internet safety tips and helping to raise awareness around the importance of this. I will be covering the Internet Safety Day 2016 events on my Periscope channel @BoopFashionista so if you would like to see know how you can play your part, be sure to tune in. Today is a day for everyone to come together and create a safer internet. The internet can be an amazing place where communities are created, so let’s keep it this way.
Watch the Periscope Replay
I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. What is your top internet safety tip?