When I was a kid I would share my thoughts with my real friends the ones that live in the neighborhood or I went to school with. Maybe some of the things I shared should have not been shared in the first place but since I though they were my real childhood friends the possibility of that information leaking everywhere was a lot smaller than now.
My childhood friends where not virtual
My real friends where pretty much in the same classroom or neighborhood so everything I shared with them stayed in the same group. Worst-case scenario would have been that I got embarrassed in front of my classmates or neighborhood friends but that would easily be forgotten in minutes or hours. The next day we were all playing along together living one day at a time.
Sharing private thoughts and information online is a completely different scenario. Here are some of the risks of sharing information with supposedly online friends:
People you have Never Met in Person
Not only might they have virtual contacts they have never met in person it is very difficult to validate someone’s identity online.
Someone might be saying they are 15 years old and they might be a 42 year old with bad intentions.
Once You Send a Message you Lose Control
When you hit send even if you send it to the correct recipient that communication either via email or in another platforms inbox can be easily share with others without your control. Anyone that can gain access to that inbox can use that information to his or her benefit.
It exists somewhere for an indefinite time
Not only can an electronic message end up in the wrong hands it is probably stored in a computer, server, or inbox for years and once you send it you have no control of deleting it. Different to when you share something with a real person in a conversation and the person might even forget, an electronic file can last for more time than you might like.
Information shared might put the Family at Risk
Sharing a picture with Geo-Location data might give out your family’s home location. If a teenager or kid is interacting with stranger’s online and sharing private information by sharing a picture, they might put the complete family at risk. Make sure geo-location data is not captured by any of the devices your family uses especially those that share files with others.
Don’t Share Private Information
Sharing private information is never a good idea no matter what channel it is. Given how much time we all spend conversing online, the possibility of sharing such info online increases. Make sure to teach your family what things are considered highly confidential and should not be shared with anyone.
Keep reminders visible in the areas where your family uses the devices to make sure there is less of a risk of any private information leaking out.
How do you make sure your family keeps your private information private?
photo credit by WebWizzard