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Are you social media safe?

Sharing . Access . Friends . Expectations

Social media has become one of the largest communications spaces in the world, with over 100+ different platforms available to everyone of all ages.

With younger generations now having easier access to digital devices and the global internet we need to be safer than ever with what we share and how has access to our information.

To support everyone I have put together S.A.F.E which breaks down the concept of social media into 4 key areas with useful resource, guidance and further information on how you and your children can be Social Media S.A.F.E

The 4 key areas have been designed to cross check each other. For example you will see that Access covers is relevant to all parties much like friends. More information and top tips on how to stay Social Media S.A.F.E can be located towards the bottom of the post.

Sharing

One of the main use of social media is sharing everything we do in our everyday life, from celebrations to holidays, work changes to what we had for breakfast. With everything we are sharing there comes a warning about what is social media acceptable and what should probably be kept private. When sharing things on social media the first thought should be, do I really need to post this picture of my breakfast? The second thought should be, if someone from my work was to see this would it be deemed unprofessional. Whilst companies can’t have a direct say on what you post on your social media it can be seen to shed a different light on the person. Is that always the best thing to do?

Access

Access is a massive part and covers most areas under S.A.F.E. Who has access to see what I’m sharing? Who has access to my personal information? Who can see my friends list? This is one of the main areas that a lot of people miss out when protecting themselves online. For platforms such as Instagram access can be limited in one simple way, do I have a public or private account? For staff who work in schools, getting your access set correctly on your social media account is massively important not just to ensure that only the people you know can view your content but also to safeguard you from parents and possible pupils from finding your accounts.

For sites like Facebook getting your access correct is important as it is broken down into a number of key sections which protect your account, posts, personal information, photos, friends lists and more. All of the settings can be located within the Facebook app/website under the settings cog. Make sure you know who has access and what they can see.

Friends

One of the main reasons we have social media is to showcase to all our friends and family our new pet dog! But do you know all of the people that follow your accounts? One of the biggest loop hole for some social media companies is that anyone with an email can create a social media account with limit security/identity checks. So is Joe Bloggs actually Joe from the office? No, I’m not saying contact everyone within your accounts but maybe take some time to double check through your accounts and remove people who you don’t know. Now I am aware that some people are on social media to become the next influencer and the number of followers you have is the most important thing to your credibility, however for young children or teenagers the digital world can be a dangerous place.

So next time someone requests to follow you, take a moment to think. Do I know you either personally or from work? and do I want to share my daily life content with you?

Expectations

Expectations is an interesting one to include on this listing. Was I just looking for an extra letter to fill, maybe? This last point is a simple question and something to make you think before starting your next social media account, what are you expecting to use this account for? Do I really need another account?

The main expectation of social media is to share and keep up to date with what your friends and family are up to. When your child/ren are asking to set up their new TikTok account, maybe ask them about what they are going to post on the app or what they are expecting to get out from using it. Don’t get me wrong all social media has channels for learning whether it be Microsoft or their favourite YouTuber sharing their top tips for playing a video game.

Always try to understand what you are expecting to get from something before sharing all of your details.

Stay Social Media S.A.F.E

S.A.F.E TOP QUESTIONS

  1. When your child/ren is asking to set up their new social media account have a think. Are they old enough to be on there?
  2. Who can see my posts?
  3. When sharing content, do you need to add your location?
  4. Don’t share content advertising that you are not home? (is that pre-holiday breakfast post needed when it clearly shows your house is empty. Again, who is on your friends list that can see that?)
  5. Do you need to share picture of your young children? (this is an interesting one and one that I will go into further. My top tip would be if you are sharing images of your young children, please make sure your account is locked down. If anyone can access the information the internet is like a mine field.)

SOCIAL MEDIA S.A.F.E

For more information regarding social media staff and training sessions that I can run on how best to protect you online, please head over to our Social Media S.A.F.E page which can be found under ‘Resources’ or Click Here

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