“The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses.” –Malcolm X
The media, the very sphere in which we live our lives within, is great in power and reaches far and wide. We exist within the media sphere, indulged in its information, craving its touch. Although the media is very beneficial in its uses, allowing its users to get a constant stream of information at their fingertips whenever and wherever, it is important to acknowledge that such a utility should still be used with precautions. Read below to find out how to be more “cyber smart”.
This tip is very important for any user of media. Always, and I emphasise the word always, check what you post before you post. This is because every time you go online and post, you leave behind a digital footprint. A digital footprint is a trail that is your mark upon cyberspace and showcases your whole existence upon the web. This trail can be used and abused by others, and it is almost impossible to have no digital footprints.
It is imperative that you monitor what you post before it is placed upon cyberspace. As I stated before, your personal data can be used and abused which is why I claim individuals should not place very serious and/or personal information online that can place the user in a dangerous situation.
If at all possible, use different passwords on different websites, have your social media accounts on private and also limit your personal postings on public forums. By doing this you shall minimise the risk of fraud and other hostile actions being taken against you. By using private social media settings, it shall allow you to acknowledge who can follow or friend you and create a safety net around you online, limiting unknown individuals from contacting you.
It may seem important to gain more likes but remaining safe is more critical.
A VPN or Virtual Private Network is “a technology that creates a safe and encrypted connection over a less secure network, such as the internet”, as stated by TechTarget. In the current media age it is very important to consider the use of a VPN due to its much needed security additions which can help “mask” your digital footprint and general internet usage by hiding your IP from the public.
VPNs that are great at what they offer include:
NordVPN (My personal favourite and the VPN I am currently using)
Express VPN (For users who wish fast VPN usage)
Tunnelbear (Has a great free version)
These 3 VPNs are my top 3 favourite. Research into VPNs and find one that it most suitable to your lifestyle and budget, it is worth it.
Although the media can be scary and its power immense, do not be afraid for it can also be great and rewarding. Embrace that we live in the media age and use its potential towards furthering yourself and your career. We are the media generation, of the new digital age, cherish that.
Remember also, be smart online at all times and do not post what you wouldn’t wish everyone to see.