Online Social Safety

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The advent of the internet has brought the world closer and made it possible for you to socialize with your social circles right from your mobile device or PC. Moreover, social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter etc. have made it easier than ever to keep the folks who matter to you updated about the happening in your life. It’s no wonder then, that almost everybody has a presence on those platforms. But while this is the positive side of the online social world, there’s also another more negative side to all this.

A recent poll by Cybersecurity firm Norton by Symantec conducted in 2017 shows that online harassment is growing in India, with 80 percent of the surveyed users admitting to have encountered some form of it. Online harassment can manifest in many forms. We’ve listed some of the most common ways in which you can be harassed online and also some ways in which you can protect yourself against these dangers:

Identity Theft:

If you’re on Social Media, chances are that you’ve got personal information – such as your photos, details of your educational background, your relationships – floating around. This provides online fraudsters the opportunity to take this information and use it to commit frauds or unlawful acts. By way of example, fraudsters obtain private details such as your Aadhaar card number or personal information like email ID and then uses it to carry out fraudulent or illegal activities, landing you in trouble. Sounds scary? It is.

Cyber Stalking:

Have you ever taken a look at the Message Requests you receive on your’Other Folder’ on Facebook? If yes, and particularly if you’re a woman, you would have definitely received upsetting messages from strangers. This is just a very basic level of cyberstalking and has been known to escalate very easily. Not just strangers, but there’s an increasing number of cases of cyberstalking by acquaintances, friends, and family as well. Not only can this be very annoying and frustrating, but can also lead to a situation where it becomes menacing and frightening. And it can easily happen to anyone.

Media Liability:

Most of us consider our Social Profiles the place from where we can express our opinions. It sounds benign, but it can land you in serious legal trouble. By way of example, if you create a podcast/blogs and somebody hacks into it, manages it and sets out content that is defamatory, infringes on any intellectual property or results in an invasion of a person’s rights of privacy then you may land in legal trouble.

So how can you protect yourself?

Some fundamental practices you can follow to avoid such scenarios are:

Set strong passwords and do not share them with anyone.

Check the privacy settings of your social profile and make sure that you’ve enabled the setting which prevents unconnected individuals from viewing your information or downloading your images

Never share sensitive details like your phone number, address or email address on your social profile, and if you do, make sure that they are hidden from the public

Do not engage with strangers, however familiar they seem.

Censor yourself while posting via your social profiles.

When these steps will keep you protected to some extent, anti-social elements that want to cause harm will always find a way to do so. In case you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation online, you should report the incident or the consumer who is causing trouble for you. You can also lodge a complaint with the Cyber Cell if things get out of hand. Our Individual Cyber Safe Insurance will ensure that the financial setbacks you could incur due to this event get minimized.

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