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OMG! TMI! Tips to Avoid Fraud in Social Media

Social networking is a fun way to connect with friends and family, meet new people and share your life with those you care about. But are you sharing too much? According to numerous case studies available online, Americans are publishing some of their most sensitive information on social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. In the wrong hands this information could be used against you by scammers looking to steal your identity and your money. If you’re guilty of sharing too much information like the majority of consumers surveyed, you might want to make these changes when posting or tweeting online:

AVOID POSTING SENSITIVE PERSONAL INFORMATION

It may sound obvious to not publish account numbers, but you’d be surprised at what people actually share on social media sites: social security number, home address, travel dates, full birth date, phone number, and mother’s maiden name. This information, along with credit card numbers and other financial information should never be shared on social media. Even though your pet's name, phone number, physical and email address may seem harmless, they can give criminals enough clues to answer security questions and break into your accounts.

UPDATE YOUR PROFILE INFORMATION

If your profile contains any of the above-mentioned information, remove it. It’s better to be safe than sorry. On Facebook, simply click “update info” under your cover photo.

USE THE PRIVACY SETTINGS

Not everyone needs to see every post you make or every feed that appears in your Facebook Timeline. When you post something, you can control who sees it by using “audience selector.” You can also create groups to better define your audiences. When other people post on your Timeline, you can control who sees it by choosing the audience of the “Who can see what others post on your Timeline” setting.

REPORT A PROBLEM

If you’re receiving spam tweets or messages from Facebook, block or ban the user and report the problem. In Facebook, go to the conversation, open the Actions Menu and select “Report as Spam or Abuse.” For Twitter, visit the spam account’s profile, tap the icon, select “Block or Report” and click “This is a spam account.”

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