Protect YOURSELF [Facebook Privacy]

Amidst debates about Facebook privacy, I can’t help but being amused.

Don’t get me wrong. I am concerned about my online privacy like anyone else. As much as possible, I have tried to set up my Facebook account to be private and secure, and continue to check my settings as the privacy policy changes. I check how my profile looks to people in certain groups of permissions. I am cautious about who I accept as a friend. I am careful with what I post, and even careful about what comments my friends post on my wall, photos or statuses. I have Facebook configured so that people I work with can only see certain content.  I have two Twitter accounts, one private (personal) account, and one public account.

But at the end of the day, I am acutely aware that information you post on the internet is public. What I find interesting about the Facebook privacy debates is that it seems we have forgotten this.

Where did this naivete come from? Why do we think that the internet is suddenly a secure space, where corporations will build their business around protecting us? (And corporations we’re not even paying!)

I remember early users of the internet being conscious of this, perhaps even concerned or paranoid about their privacy. Internet banking and online shopping had to convince users they were a secure way to transact online. We knew that emails weren’t Fort Knox and were warned not to share confidential information openly online.

When did we get lulled into this sense of false security? And why did common sense fly out the window?

If you want the benefits of the internet and social media, you have to accept the downsides too. It’s rather simple. Don’t pose for photos you wouldn’t want posted. Don’t post photos you wouldn’t want shared. And don’t write, say or do anything that you couldn’t comfortably show your grandmother or your boss. Take responsibility for your online privacy. A corporation will do what is in its best interest, and we must do what is in ours.

One thought on “Protect YOURSELF [Facebook Privacy]

  1. You are right on Michelle! It is a false sense of security for sure! I really hope that we all don’t end up being sorry in the long run!

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