You might be, if you’ve got a social media account and you’re not using it regularly.
Front page article in the New York Times today about hacked social media accounts and the mischief being done with them. The lead is a guy whose Twitter account was sending messages shilling lingerie for 5 days before he realized what was going on. Finally a professional connection emailed him to ask what the story was. Up until that point, he’d had no idea.
It’s sort of surprising that someone piped up that quickly. I’d be curious to know what the damage was to his reputation; how many people said nothing but instead simply stopped following him, and probably thought less of him than they had previously.
Same story is possible on Facebook or any other social network. There has also been an absolute ton of ink the past few days about Facebook’s updated security settings. Plenty of places you can go for more info (like here), so I won’t get into the details. Both items point toward the importance of staying on top of your online life.
When it comes to security of your digital profile, nothing beats activity. If you’re not using the account, you’re not going to catch fraudulent activity until someone points it out to you. (If you’re lucky.) And if you are using the account, you lower your chance of being targeted.
So Tweet. (Use Facebook, Ning, LinkedIn.) Or don’t. But don’t open the account and ignore it.