The Huffington post has an article giving out some good advice (Yikes … did I just use the phrase “Good Advice” and “Huffington Post” in the same sentence? My mind is truly blown away). Anyway, I’ve distilled it all down for you now, so here it is.
You might indeed desire to post anything and everything for all your Facebook friends… but first stop and think. There are a couple of things you should seriously consider not putting up. For example …
1) Where and when you were Born – If you reveal this, then in the US its possible to reconstruct your US social security number.
2) Mothers maiden name – This is the default answer to security questions deployed by many, for example, granting access to your bank account.
3) Where you Live – When your local friendly burgler spots you announcing a trip, he then knows where to make a call
4) Where you are – Its tied in with the previous one. Thats as good as a public announcent along the lines of , “Empty house, come help yourself”. Its not just holiday, a Tweet announcing “Out for a run” is just as good. So skip the vacation countdowns, but posting the photos after you get back is OK.
5) Inappropriate pictures – It might end up in a job loss. Employers do sometimes check this stuff.
6) Confessionals – No matter how crass you feel your fellow workers or boss might be, don’t post it, doing so may end up as a career decision. Also, don’t post about how you just fiddled your expenses or tax return either, it will come back to bite you.
7) Phone Numbers – There are apps out there that harvest these and sell lists. Also, do you really want all you FB friends, and friends of friends, to call.
8) Risky Behavior – Yes it cool to post about hang gliding, or rock climbing without ropes, but insurance companies will adjust your premium when they start harvesting this information.
9) Advertise your stuff – Photos with expensive electronics in your home, or expensive cars out front allows thieves to target you.
This is not a definitive list, but the above should be enough for you to get the idea and I’m sure you can think of more.
So when dealing with FB … don’t go nuts, instead pause, filter carefully and only post what you would be happy to see published on the front page of a national newspaper and read by everybody you might ever meet.
Now, on to a bit of evidence:
- Here is a list of 13 stories about folks who got fired for what they posted on FB
- Hers is a list of folks who got arrested for what they posted on FB
- Article about insurance companies harvesting FB details
So be cautious, and be safe out there.