As the blogging industry continues to grow, more people are setting up blogs and social media accounts. We’re all sharing more of our lives online than ever before, but this can mean unwittingly putting yourself in danger.
Exercising a little caution in what you post can help to protect you online without giving up the enjoyment of sharing a little of yourself.
Be Careful With Personal Details
Be aware that people you don’t know are seeing your posts, and could use them to work out where you live or work.
Think about any personal details you share that could lead people to your location. For example, say you live in New York would be fine, but never share the name of the street you live on. Never share the name of your place of work or any hints about the company you work for. Not everyone who follows you may have good intentions.
Unboxing videos could also put you at risk. If you’re sharing pictures or videos of products you’ve ordered or that you have been sent, be careful to make sure your address never appears in shot. Scribble it out thoroughly or rip off any address labels before you start to film or take pictures to make sure you don’t forget to cover it up.
If brands or fans sometimes you send items for review or as gifts, you can do this without sharing your real address with strangers. Sign up with an online virtual address service such as https://physicaladdress.com/ instead. You can give this address to anyone wanting to send you things and be sure your location is kept a secret.
Think About What You Say
If you’re writing about personal or controversial subjects, be aware of the impact this could have on your day job. Some companies have strict rules about their employee’s social media presence to avoid your opinions reflecting poorly on them. Never mention where you work, and maybe consider using a pen name.
If you’re writing about sex and dating, religion or politics, for example, keeping your identity a secret could save blow-back from people in your work or social life. Make sure there aren’t any specific rules in your contract about social media, and if there are, be sure your accounts adhere to those rules.
Remember people in your real life may be reading your blog without you realizing. Think twice about writing about someone you know without their permission; if they don’t like what they read about themselves, you could end up causing an argument, or at worst, be sued for libel.
If you have old posts still live that could cause trouble if somebody found them, make sure you get rid of them. Think twice before you post, as any old post could come back to bite you if the wrong person came across it. Don’t risk your career or relationships for a piece of content. The internet can be forever, and your younger self-writing without thought could cost if you live old posts or tweets to be found.