Safety issues for teenagers and adults using social media

Social media is most easiest and trendy way to expand network in today's busiest environment. Teenagers are fond of making new friends and adding those friends on social network sites like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and LinkedIn. Social networking sites are good platform for teens to expand and enhance their connection to those friends.

These websites have numerous Internet features into one such as the ability to post personal profiles, blogs, photos and videos, the latest news about music groups or hot new products, opinion polls, user groups. These networks often share information with other approved users, such as one's gender, age, interests, educational background and employment, as well as files and links to music, photos and videos.

These websites may also share selected information with individuals and applications that are not authorized contacts. Majority of teens have at least one social network account to share their views. Through social networking, people can find their childhood best friend, school mate teachers and other important person. It is wonderful way of making new contacts that can be used to resolve numerous life issues.

Online social networks are websites that facilitate users to build strong connections and relationships to other Internet users. Social networks store information remotely, rather than on a user's personal computer.

Though it is nice way to use internet technology to exchange information, make effective communication and perform other work but it is important for elders and parents to check about Internet safety and protect their teens for unforeseen threats. Information posted on social network becomes public in numerous ways. This information becomes public in a variety of ways. A user may select to post their details as public without limiting access via available privacy settings. When posting anything online, some information may be publicly observable by default. In some circumstances, a user may change the privacy settings to make details private therefore only selected and approved people can view it and other information must remain public.

There is option for social network site to amend its privacy policy at any time without a user's permission. Content that was posted with restrictive privacy settings may become visible when a privacy policy is changed. Approved friends or other group members may copy and repost information such as photos without the permission of a user and violating privacy settings. Third party applications that are allowed to access also can see information that a user contacts post privately. These sites do not provide guarantee for the security of the information that has been posted even though it has been made private.

Entities that collect personal information for legal purposes are advertisers who are more interested to collect personal information so that they will be in a position to access targeted customers. Third party software developers also integrate information to personalize applications, such as online games that interact with the social network. There are some entities that accumulate personal information for illegitimate purposes such as identity thieves who acquire sensitive data of users through posts or that others post about the user. Other online crooks such as people who intend to scam or hassle users of social networking site. These internet criminals may corrupt computers with malware.

Unfortunately, there are fraudulent, who can steal personal information of internet users and bully them or make illicit relationship. Hackers use social media to get important data of person like date of birth, location, background data, and some official information to target a victim. Burglary, identity theft and sex crimes are some of the major categories of internet criminals. These actions have dangerous consequences and may spoil the whole life of teens therefore teens must be cautious and be knowledgeable while working on internet and using social media to make new contacts. There are numerous safety measures that teens can follow to shield them from unexpected menace.

It is necessary for social networking users, especially teens to keep their profile private so that only family and close persons view photos, important dates and other important details. Teens are not advised to post personal details such as phone numbers, residential address, and school or ID number or driving licence number. If teens plan to share photos of parties and any get together event, they can publish such photos that cannot be used to exploit them or endanger their safety or their integrity.

The most important thing is to choose strong password that cannot be easily cracked. They must change password frequently so that crooks cannot access their social network account to crack sensitive information. It is common understanding that teens must not allow to accept friend requests from strangers. Parents must be friendly and talk freely on any topic related to safety of their kids while working on social networking site because slight mistake may grip their child to complex situation. Parents must guide them from time to time and inform know about danger of sharing sensitive data on internet. Parents must always make fell free to their child to communicate if they have received private messages from a stranger, or from someone at school/ college who is teasing, harassing or threatening them. These may be the signal of cyber-bullying or even a sexual predator. It is advisable to keep strong antivirus and spyware to guard computer. It is not a compulsion to give detailed information to others while working on social networking site. Provide general information that is necessary or that can be shared without any risk because users can not always remove information once it's been posted.

Parent's role in watching their teens who use social networking site

Parents must gather enough information about social networking sites. They can monitor their child's activities in various ways. They must know Learn what their teen is doing on the Internet besides posting on social networking sites. Time to time, parents give advice to teens about what is appropriate to share on the web. They must act as a friend to help their teen and try to find balance in life.

Guidelines to use social networking site

When users work on social networking site, they must be familiar with the privacy settings available on any social network. While using Facebook, user must make certain that his default privacy setting is Friends Only. Otherwise, use the Custom setting and configure the setting to achieve maximum privacy. One should fully aware of changes to a social network's terms of service and privacy policy. It can be done through connecting to an official site profile. Another precaution is to be taken while working online social networking site is that user must carefully click on shortened links.

In social networking site, User must very cautious of pop-up windows, especially any of that state security software is out of date or that security threats and/or viruses have been detected on computer. User must delete cookies every time before closing a social networking site such as flash cookies. It is advised to users that they must not publicize vacation plans, especially the specific dates in which they have planned for outing because robbers can use this information to rob their house while they will be out of city. Teens must be cautious in using third-party applications.

In order to maintain high level of safety and privacy, it is better to avoid them completely. If users have received a request to connect with other person, it is essential to discover the name, verify the account holder's identity before accepting the request. If users receive a connection request from an unfamiliar person, it is advised to reject the request on safer side. If they want to accept the request, use privacy settings to limit information that is disclosed to the stranger and be careful in posting personal information to account, such as current location as well as individual information.

In case of any danger in using social networking account, user must take initiative and report it to the site immediately and alert their contacts. The safest way is to immediately change passwords, but proceed with caution because their computer security may have been compromised. Malware, including key-logging software, may have been installed on user's computer. If teens are using a social networking site that offers video chatting, pay attention to the light on computer that indicates whether or not webcam is in use. This will help user avoid being caught on camera by accident. These precautions can secure teens and adults while working on social networking site.

Legal framework for social networking sites

Social networking in India is growing at fast paced which also triggers rise to legal issues. Most of these legal issues are associated with online activities or omissions that are resulting in giving rise to civil and criminal liabilities. In India laws applicable to social networking acts or omissions range from intellectual property rights (IPRs) to information technology. Social networking media is a mediator within the meaning of Indian information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000). Consequently social networking sites in India are legally responsible for diverse acts or omissions that are punished by under the laws of India. For example, social networking sites are accountable for online IPRs violations, including online copyright violations in India.

Appraising the use of social networking sites in India, it can be established that teenagers comprehensively use social networking sites to connect and share with their companions. The Internet has emerged as practical means for millions around the globe to close each other and build long-term relationship. It is necessary to educate teens about its security, threats and other legal issues.