How to Use Your Twitter Account Safely and Successfully
With any social media platform, there’s the potential for danger. Whether dealing with threats or hatred from other users, trying to get a handle on what exactly is acceptable on social media, or keeping up to date on the platform’s actual official issues; there’s a lot to do. Nowhere is that more evident than on Twitter, which recently released a statement advising all users to change their passwords immediately. This particular case wasn’t because of any security breaches, and was instead because of a programming error that caused passwords to be displayed in an internal log in plain text rather than as a masked set of characters. However, actual security breaches aren’t an unheard-of issue in social media, and some of the biggest social media companies have dealt with data leaks and hacks that affected millions of users. If you’re going to use social media, you have to be prepared for security issues; that’s just how the numbers work out. Here are some ways to prepare yourself while still using the platform to your benefit.
Don’t Reuse Passwords, and Don’t Use Easily Guessed Passwords
This is something that plenty of websites will tell you, but very few people will actually take to heart. In fact, using different passwords on different sites is one of the best ways to keep yourself safe, and making sure you stay away from easily guessed passwords is another way to ensure that you’re not at risk of being hacked, whether on Twitter or any other platform. In both 2017 and 2016, “123456” was the most widely hacked password, with “Password” being number two. Other notable passwords that hackers frequently find include “qwerty,” “welcome,” and “login,” all of which have been in the list for multiple years. By making sure you use a password that’s unique to you and contains a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols, you make your password more difficult to guess. Using a password manager is a good solution to the problem of remembering passwords when you use a different password for each site; different shortcuts to password strength are available on the internet, so there’s no reason to avoid it.
Stay Up to Date on Online Security News
Especially if you use your Twitter for business, whether that’s running a large corporation’s Twitter or just maintaining a news feed for your small company, it’s important to make sure you know what’s going on both in Twitter’s security news and in security among the wider internet presence. Staying up to date doesn’t have to mean delving deeply into high-tech news sites and blog posts or educating yourself about every virus that’s being found. In fact, many sites provide overviews of this kind of information in public-friendly language, so you can get your security news in non-technical language. You can also visit security-minded blogs, such as the PeopleFinders blog, to get broad information on how to keep yourself safe online.
Check People You’re Interacting with Online
It’s something you’ve probably been told since you were a kid: be safe online, because you never know with whom you’re really talking. In actuality, it’s more likely than you think. While the wide majority of people do play up certain parts of their lives on social media, some people outright lie about whom they are or what they do. Whether it’s to get attention, gain success, or just manipulate others into sending them money, there are people who are going to try to take advantage of you on Twitter and other social media platforms. Some fake accounts are run by easy-to-avoid programs, but some are run by actual people that are much more difficult to spot. Instead of taking people’s word for who they are, you can use PeopleFinders to get hard evidence on it! With PeopleFinders, you can use a reverse phone lookup to see who owns the phone number you’ve been given, do a background check on people you’re talking to, or try a public records search to make sure that crazy story you’re being told is real.
It takes some work, but it’s definitely not impossible to stay safe when using Twitter. All you have to do is be careful and take some common sense precautions when it comes to your interactions. If you’re getting serious about helping someone, meeting up with him or her, or entering business deals, a great idea is to use PeopleFinders to give yourself some extra peace of mind.
Photo credit: ultramansk – stock.adobe.comTags: Email Lookup, Facebook, Online Identity, Online Safety, Social Media, Twitter
Categorized in: Digital Identity