Oversharing: A Self Inflicted Danger

Brandon McCauley
Brandon McCauley
September 4th, 2021
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When protecting both your privacy and online accounts, you are your own best defense. You determine the length and complexity of each password, as well as which extra security measurements to opt-into, such as Two-Factor Authentication. While these are all phenomenal ways to protect yourself from malefactors, people often overlook something excruciatingly important: their mannerisms on social media.

The Scope of Your Information on Social Media

As expressed in one of our previous articles, the “send” button on social media generates an immense outreach. Your information immediately becomes accessible to millions of people, one of which that could potentially be your undoing. This is why it is crucial for users to post safely, as even the most arbitrary piece of information could be extremely valuable to a cybercriminal.

What is Oversharing?

The definition of “oversharing” is rather self-evident - it is simply disclosing too much information. Whether it be a post with your pet’s name, a picture at your favorite local coffee shop, or details about an upcoming vacation, these all come with a level of risk. Your pet’s name could be linked to one of your passwords, the post at your local coffee shop could give away your location to strangers, and a post about an upcoming trip out-of-town could be an unintended invitation for a burglar to break into your home while you are away.

There are also features on the social media platforms themselves that could be detrimental to keeping your online presence safe. Certain components of these sites, such as Twitter, often provide information to the public that you might not necessarily want out there. For example, posts made on certain platforms can have tags, or “geolocators,” underneath them that disclose where the post was created. There are also “fun” features that go unnoticed, like your birthday. While it is nice to receive birthday wishes, your date-of-birth is critical information to cybercriminals looking to breach your accounts, as they are often tied to passwords or security questions.

How to Protect Yourself from Oversharing

If you are just learning about oversharing and the immense risk that comes with it, you may be wondering how you could protect yourself. Fear not - preventing oversharing only takes a few steps! Here are some great ways for you to prevent accidentally doing it in the future:

  • Make your social media profiles private
  • Avoid posting personal details
  • Be mindful of what you are posting before you press “send”
  • Disable location-based settings on social media platforms

While these are good measures to prevent oversharing in the future, posts from your past that could be oversharing your information are still out there. Now, you may think to yourself “How do I go back to delete hundreds, maybe thousands of posts? That’s too much time and effort!” Fortunately for you, Redact can get this done with ease. Whether it be a post you made a day ago or a year ago, Redact can go back and remove them from the public’s eye, ridding the threat of oversharing. You can get started for free today by downloading Redact for Windows, MacOS, or Linux at redact.dev/download.