Privacy. It’s not talked about often enough. We live in a dangerous world and as much as we’d like to bury our heads in the sand, we must face the music. We protect so many things during our lifetime, from our health to our wealth. But do we give that same protection to, say, our privacy? To how much strangers know/see about us? Probably not. In this age of social media, it’s super easy for anyone to gather info about you. That’s without hacking. It’s just through scrolling on your (public) feed! See it’s just as unsafe to walk out and about with your valuables on show (that includes your phone!) as it is to post things about your personal life online. Both of these put you at risk, leaving you in a tight and vulnerable spot. But luckily it can all be avoided by being that bit more careful – and aware.
From insta to facebook to Tik Tok our lives are out in the open for everyone and anyone to see. Back in the day, when I used to have insta and facebook (for all of 4 months), I saw friends of mine posting their every move. From the location of their local coffee shop to their trip Barbados (including posting pics of their travel card). It was out there. In the open. All you need is one creepy stalker to find you. And easily, with all that info sloshing around. While it seems everyone posts things publicly, doesn’t mean you have to do that too. The less of your life is on show, the better.
So readers, do yourselves a favour and make sure that your profile is on private mode and that you only accept connections from people who actually know! Hence the word ‘friends’! Yeah, sure, you’ll end up having fewer followers but isn’t that worth it to protect and ensure your safety? And, well, from what I’ve seen is that being ‘famous’ on insta (aka having tons of followers) is about as useless as it is being rich in Monopoly. But to make sure that you’re even safer, avoid posting your location, pictures of your kids, where you live and other personal info. That people so often mistaken for public info! I’ve seen friends post pictures of what block they live on, their house and even pictures of their kids. Along with all their birth dates. Keep your personal life private. That’s where it belongs.
Keep It Safe!
For someone to profile you, they need three things: your name, your date of birth and lastly, your address. That’s it. That’s all they need and then they can open up credit cards in your name. Or worse, take out a mortgage. In your name! Stealing identities is as much a crime as stealing your possessions. And it really does happen. But if one piece of the puzzle is missing, they can’t nick your identity to use for all sorts of things you’d much rather not happen. This is why I have an account with Experian (this is not an ad!) that displays my credit score and if my score suddenly falls, it’ll pick up on why. And then I can investigate it further. That way I always know what’s going on. Because there’s nothing worse than not knowing. Also, make sure that your banking app and your investment accounts all have two-factor authentication on as well as passwords that are hard to guess. Not something like FirstName123! The more complicated, the safer.
This is why it’s imperative that you also tear up any piece of paper that has your name and address on them. The most common place is for your name and address to be found on is on those handy-dandy parcels. So, as soon as you get your package and rip it open, be sure that you’re also ripping up your address and discarding of it. But be sure it’s torn up into tiny pieces making it impossible for anyone to piece it back together. Better still, why not invest in a shredder!
I don’t say all this to scare you, but to open your eyes to some of the things that could go wrong if you aren’t careful enough. These aren’t paranoid thoughts. They’re very real possibilities that could literally happen to anyone. So be careful, be vigilant and protect yourself. Both online as well as on the streets!
Protect your privacy and your privacy will protect you.
Disclaimer: This blog is not investment or financial advice. It is my opinion only. This blog is not a personal recommendation to buy/sell any security, or to adopt any such investment strategy. Always do your own research before you commit to any investment.