I read an article in this morning’s Telegraph about criminals now sourcing and then stealing CV details and then applying for jobs under other people’s names to engage in fraudulent activity.

I have often thought about what is safe to put online and what isn’t. My former colleague Sebastian, wrote an interesting post the other day about the conundrum he is facing when using Twitter and Facebook and how he is struggling to weigh them both up. He comments about his blog readers:

“My lot don’t give a damn about what Brand Republic are talking about, or what new application can be downloaded for free for the next 20hrs only. They just want good banter, things that make us laugh or think. So where does this leave me? I’m tempted to go through all my Facebook ‘friends’ and have a mass clear out, get back to basics.  As for Twitter… I guess it’s all about social-media etiquette. Which in my opinion needs to be massively based on real-life etiquette – the only difference is – what’s said over a pint, is said over a pint. What’s published online is there forever.”

What Seb highlights here is true, if you write something online it is there for ALL to see. How many of us have read the following on a Twitter stream or Facebook status: “On the beach in XXXX with the family”. How easy does that make it for criminals to then research your online information and find out where you live?

If these criminals can be bothered to play the long game with researching jobs and then applying for them, I am sure they could be bothered to do a bit of quick research and nip around to your house and clear it out. The truth is I think we are all about to see a lot more criminal activity coming from information sourced from social networks.

My advice would be make sure you have the security options turned on on for most of your platforms e.g Facebook and Linked-in. However, please don’t protect your updates on Twitter as people (including me) won’t follow you back.

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About Chris Norton

Chris Norton is the founder of Prohibition and an award winning communications consultant with more than twenty years’ experience. He was a lecturer at Leeds Beckett University and has had a varied PR career having worked both in-house and in a number of large consultancies. He is an Integrated PR and social media blogger and writes on a wide variety of blogs across a huge amount of topics from digital marketing, social media marketing right through to technology and crisis management.