You’ve heard it all before: there’s a fine balance to be struck between sharing personal information and oversharing information that might put you at risk.
A large proportion of people use social media and, in doing so, give up some degree of their privacy. But is is a choice. In return for giving their information to a website/organisation, they get something in return – a service, the ability to see what other people have shared and to continue sharing information with others as freely, or as restricted, as they choose. Well, that’s the theory – of course this is somewhat dependent on the terms and conditions written into the service that you’re using. The Economist points out that there is a continued tension between the service provider (for example, Facebook) and their users in what kinds of information should be available and to whom (to only certain people selected by the user, to only friends, to friends of friends, to external application providers etc).
If you’re concerned about your privacy, and where your online information is going, look for the terms and conditions on their site or contact the service provider directly and, while you’re at it, check out the Australian Office of the Privacy Commissioner’s website which has some great information about your rights and private information.