Your Practical New Year’s Resolution

How do I start?

  • Take stock of all your social media sites e.g. Facebook, Tumblr, Skype, WhatsApp, YouTube, Snapchat etc etc etc… even LinkedIn
  • Take stock of all the junk / emails / newsletters you receive – especially those that you throw in the bin automatically!
  • Check what information you store and share about yourself, family and friends via social media and email.
  • Check the free apps on your phone, IPad and so on

What then?

  1. Remove stuff that can help criminals copy your identity from social media
  • Your Birthday – honestly, who needs hundreds of Facebook congratulations when all you want is a bunch of flowers or a pint…
  • Your address
  • Your place of work
  1. Disable the location function on your social media accounts, your phone, IPad and stuff
  2. Unsubscribe’ from emails & newsletters AND tell the relevant company to delete your details. Just binning them or unsubscribing doesn’t delete your data.
  3. Do not take part in social media games e.g. “Find your most used word on Facebook”. Those apps / games are paid for with your IDENTITY (your name, habits, date of birth…) Do not share, like anything that you have not vetted as legitimate. Seriously!
  4. Reconsider free apps – They are usually ‘free’ in exchange for your identity. Who are you happy to share your mobile habits, location, user activities etc with?  

Why oh Why?

Online data theft is now much more common than normal theft or break ins.  Criminals now copy who you are to access finance or commit crime in your name via online means.  Its frankly much easier to find information about you online than it is by going through your rubbish. 

Remember, criminals do not care if you are on benefits or a person worth billions.  Your most basic data is worth at least £5 per sale on the black market.  Now consider that this data is sold over and over, regardless of your social or financial status, your information is so worth it. 

Think about protecting information about you in the same way you lock your doors and windows when leaving the house.  Your data is more valuable than gold, oil or other precious items. Protect it, protect yourself, protect your family. 

For further help, do check out the free legal help on offer for Your Business Community Premium members or get in touch to talk things through. 

Happy New Year!