5 Tips to ensure safety on social network
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Telegram, YouTube… They are part of our daily lives. Who doesn’t use one? Today I am going to give you 5 tips so that you have a secure profile on your social networks.
First, let’s put ourselves in context: more than 4,388 million people access the Internet daily in the world. Of them, 3,484 million use some social network. This means that around 79.39% use some social network.
With this volume, you will not be surprised to learn that data thefts occur on networks every day. Check if your data has ever been leaked here and now.
What Social Networks are the most used?
Of all of them, the TOP 5 social networks with the largest number of users in the world are:
Facebook : 2.271 million users
YouTube : 1.9 billion users
WhatsApp : 1.5 billion users
Facebook Messenger : 1.3 billion users
WeChat : 1.083 million users
Isn’t it amazing to see the Chinese social network WeChat on the list? This network in which practically all the users are of Chinese origin and is capable of becoming one of those with the most users worldwide.
In Spain, the most active social network is YouTube with 89% , followed by WhatsApp with 87% and Facebook with 82%. Instagram has already managed to overtake Twitter in the list, placing 4th in the table with 54%.
The country with the highest penetration of social networks among its population is the United Arab Emirates, with 99% penetration! That is, the country with the highest volume of active users on the networks with respect to the total population. The first 6 countries on this list are countries of Asian origin, with the first European country in 10th position (Sweden) and Spain in 29th position with 60% penetration among its population.
Now yes, 5 tips that will guarantee you have a secure profile on social networks
Not all that glitters is gold. Social networks have opened a very large melon in terms of loss of information security, loss of privacy, spread of viruses, victims of impersonation…
Here are 5 tips that will guarantee you have a secure profile when using social networks and avoid any possible identity theft:
1. Use a strong password and enable two-factor authentication
Less than a month ago a relative had his identity spoofed on Instagram. From their fake profile, they started posting photos of 90% off sunglasses promotions. Posting was constantly happening on his Instagram feed, up to 5 or 6 posts a day!
When he became aware of what was happening and after doing some research on the Internet, he saw that there were many people who had been impersonated using the same method. The recommended solution was to change the password and set a much more powerful and robust password since their password had been compromised. In addition to denouncing the impersonation, of course.
It is advisable to use passwords that contain uppercase, lowercase, symbols and numbers with a long length: more than 12 characters. Try that the password does not contain dictionary words that can be easily detected by robots that manage to obtain the passwords using a brute force technique. It is highly recommended to put a phrase of at least 3 words as a password to make it robust.
This is the time it would take to break some passwords of the type:
- abc1234: 1 millisecond
- Toby2019: 4 seconds
- 28121999Mc: 2 hours
- Champions League: 3 days
- WKTSLE1&: 47 years old
- I love taking you 4 times a day: 102,133,402,054,325,310 centuries
Another additional and highly recommended step is the activation of two-step or double-factor authentication (2FA). So after entering your password you will receive an SMS or another authentication system to verify that it is your account. Thus, even if someone can steal your password, they will not be able to access your account.
2. Configure the privacy of all your networks
We should all configure the privacy of our social network accounts from minute 1. Properly configuring our profile options can help us so that only the people we want can see our publications or our data. In this way we considerably minimize the risk of exposure of the information and that third parties may make improper use of our information.
More than once it has been seen in internet articles how photos from social networks of people, both minors and adults, have been used without their permission, with a lucrative objective.
Good use of privacy settings can help prevent this and give us more peace of mind when posting content. As an example, in Facebook to be able to configure the different privacy options we should go to the Settings-Privacy menu. Here we can review option by option to be able to activate or select the option that best fits the profile we want to have.
3. Control what you post
Although it seems like common sense, not everyone applies it to social networks. Not everything goes on social networks and we have to be aware and be careful with what we publish. If we give too much information, it can be used by third parties, for example, to carry out robberies in our home, taking advantage of the fact that they know that we are not at home because we have uploaded a photo in the port of Ibiza having a coffee at sunset.
When hiring a candidate, many companies analyze their social networks and can obtain information about their personal life, political opinions, pace of life… what we think only our friends see, our future bosses may be seeing and can damage our reputation .
It is also important to be aware that any information we upload to a social network, we lose control over it. We can now delete it or ask the social network to delete our information, which will always remain on the Internet, or anyone who has been able to see it can use it to spread it.
4. Beware of attractive giveaways and suspicious links
Who hasn’t received the mythical scam on Facebook of the raffle of 150 gift cards for a clothing brand with a €500 balance? This scam in which many people stung because they saw it as very attractive. It had the objective of obtaining our personal data, since they asked you to fill out a form with your data and to invite 25 friends to click on the link. A link that soon went viral, while someone in the shadows was quickly and freely obtaining the information of thousands of people to later sell it to third parties for commercial purposes.
Any raffle or offer in which we think “this is impossible to be true” has to be enough not to click and not fall into the trap. Many of these links when clicking on them can result in the silent installation of malware on our computer and affect its performance.
5. Protect your digital identity. Watch out for impersonation
Haven’t you gone looking for a singer or actress profile on Instagram and seeing that there are 4 or 5 profiles that are practically the same? Even some of these profiles with thousands of followers . Well, it is not that the famous person has gone crazy and has several profiles, but that someone is taking advantage of his image and is getting followers at his expense, being able to use said account for illicit acts or obtain a benefit at his expense.
On many occasions there have even been thefts or identity theft, in which a cyber thief can carry out criminal acts by posing as another person asking for donations or deposits in a bank account for an event. This act is classified as a crime in the Penal Code.
Creating a profile on a social network is as simple as creating a profile with an email and using photographs of another person to be able to deceive other users.