Being Safe Online
Who knew that some dangerous crimes are now able to form within your own home? The past few decades have proven that the internet is becoming quite the common place for frauds to start their mischief. Social websites such as Facebook, Myspace, Craigslist or dating websites can be great things, but unfortunately it is easy for people to use them to portray themselves as something or someone they are not. If you want to be completely safe from online frauds, I suggest trashing your computer with a baseball bat.
Let’s be real though, we cannot live our whole lives in fear of criminals on the internet, but we can be wise about online decisions! When purchasing items offline, be sure not to give out any personal information (credit card number, Social Security Number, address, full name, telephone number). If you are planning to meet your seller somewhere to receive your purchase, make sure you don’t go alone and someone else knows where you are going to meet up. Also, meet them in a public place like a Walmart or McDonald’s parking lot.
When using a social networking site such as Facebook, be careful of your activities. First, do not post personal information of any sort. Make sure your information on your profile is set to private and only view-able by your friends. Second, be careful of who you friend. Make sure you do not add anyone that you have never actually met in real life. Making fake profiles on social networks is also not cool. People are doing this more and more and it is dangerous and the outcome is never good. When someone does this, they are lying about who they are that can cause damage to others that you would never even dream of. If you wouldn’t want to be fooled online, I don’t suggest doing it to others. If an acquaintance does ask to meet up over an email, be VERY cautious. Better to say no and be safe, than to be extremely sorry later.
Pretty much it all boils down to a few basic rules: Do not give out personal information; if you are planning to meet with someone make sure you are in an area that is well populated; don’t make fake profiles! It is always better to be more cautious than not at all!