Facebook is the premier social network being utilized by individuals on a regular basis. It is not only being utilized by children but adults are getting into the act as well. It is being used to promote relationships, discussing parties, friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, and even to play games. Photos are posted, and often there are unintended consequences and risks that could endanger you, and children. These risks include identity theft, hurting college prospects, job prospects and even overspending.
Facebook is a tremendous resource for identity thieves who search pages for data they can use to apply for loans and credit cards. Scammers try to get personal details by sending quizzes or games with keystrokes collecting malware attached. If your child is using your computer, your data is also at risk.
- Make sure you, children or students do not post their full birth date or address.
- Set your privacy settings to “friends only” and not “friends of friends” which increases the number of individuals that can view a page
- Keep your PC’s anti-malware software up to date
About 25% of schools polled by the national Association for College Admission Counseling stated they utilize social networking sites to research applicants. Also, 45% of employers now use sites like Facebook to research candidates and find content that can dismiss a prospect.
Make sure you let students and your children know what will make a bad impression such as photos, postings related to sex, drinking or disparaging comments.
Review your child’s Facbook page periodically, with his/her permission and urge them to remove inappropriate posts and “untag” him/her in unseemly pics.
Approximately 43% of teens using social networks spend money on the sites, often to buy virtual items or advance in a game. For example, a Facebook credit could cost 10 cents but with many transactions, you don’t notice how much is being spent. Kids can charge credits to a mobile phone number or to a Pay Pal account if they know the password.
- Scrutinize your bills, and never store your PayPal password.
- Remind your kids they need to have your permission to bill purchases to you.