Are you concerned about releasing too much information on the web? Are you worried about what hands that information will fall into?
Many people are, and just as many people don’t seem to care too much. It would be nice to have a nice middle ground, but that’s still too much for some. How do you find that balance?
I know, with me, there are some things I have a need to keep quiet about, or at least desire to keep quiet about – you can find most anything on the Internet these days. My previous job was one where I didn’t want a lot of people knowing details of my personal life. I needed that for my safety and security. But in other situations, should we be more concerned with what information gets out?
A couple months ago, one of our friends went on vacation. He said he was going on vacation on facebook, and then realized that he had basically just let the entire universe know that he was leaving his house empty for a week, so he asked us to keep an eye on it. At the time, I thought he was overreacting – I mean, really, if your profile is private, who are you concerned about? It’s all family and friends right?
But then this morning, I was watching the news and was wondering where one of the news reporters were. Then I remembered that she had tweeted about going on vacation a couple days earlier. If I, a person she’s never met before, knows she’s on vacation, how many others know as well? Probably quite a few.
Are we overreacting about all of this? What are the chances of people paying enough attention to break into my house because I said that I was leaving for the weekend? And if they were that intent on breaking in, why wouldn’t they do it by following me on foursquare, and waiting for me to check in somewhere far away from my home? What are the statistics of break-in’s attributed with status updates? I know we hear about them, but we don’t hear about them super often. Is it more common than we realize?
And this is not just in relation to when it comes to safety of your home. What else could they use against you? I know there have been issues where people weren’t hired because of what their profiles say, but what if you blog about your company and an issue you are having with a co-worker or management and it gets back? Or you check in at your children’s school, later say something to piss another person off, and they show up at the school to confront you? Are we willing to chance that?
Social networking is huge these days, and actually necessary if you want to be more successful. How can you safely give information out about yourself without risking your wellbeing? How can you make your life and future better and more successful without indulging too much?
Be careful out there!