Be careful when connecting with new people on social media.
Let me say that one more time – Be careful when connecting with new people on social media. Now that coming from me, the queen of the phrase “It’s not about who you know, but about who they know” is quite profound. Here is why – the other day I noticed I had an invitation to connect with two new people on my Facebook page. I tend to be a bit more protective of the people to whom I connect on Facebook because it is more about my family than the other platforms.
I noticed this something that you might see in the image to the right. Do you see it? I will give you a couple of seconds to notice it. That’s right, Ashley and Gabriella have the same profile image. Now if I would have seen just Ashley, I may have connected with her, because it says that we have 6 mutual friends. That just means that 6 of my friends may automatically connect with people OR it may mean that THE HACKER was able to manipulate that account to show the mutual friends.
Most people tend to connect with someone because of the mutual friends without thinking twice about it. When it comes to Facebook, I tend to be a bit more careful. Click on the mutual friends to see who is included in the list. If the people are close friends, ask them if they know who the person is. Once I found out it was a cousin of one of my in-laws that lived in another state and just wanted to stay in touch with the family.
Several of the other platforms like Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram, you select who you follow. Often, you cannot block who follows you, but you can choose not to engage with them. In most instances, you can block followers from comments.
LinkedIn is not exempt from hackers, but it seems like the API on LinkedIn is a bit more secure and people aren’t quite as able to hack into someone’s account. They can create a fake account. I have done that myself for training purposes. So it does pay to do a bit of due-diligence with LinkedIn as well.
You know how they say locks are only for the honest people? Well, the same goes for social media. That is why it is best to keep your most private thoughts and information under lock and key.
Be care when connecting!