Think before you post

Share with care - think before you post #cyberaware

Have you ever posted an update or a comment online and then later regretted it? We have all done that! It’s in our nature to be impulsive, at least some of the time. 

And kids are even more impulsive – they often act or say things without thinking of the consequences. They are now growing up with social media, and what young children say online will still be around when they are a teen at high school, or an adult looking for work. 

You can’t take it back

Any digital information that you share, such as emails, photos or videos, can easily be copied and this is almost impossible to remove. You shouldn’t post anything that could damage your reputation, friendships or future school and work prospects.

We all need to stop and think about how what we write could look to others before we post our updates. Especially when we use humour and sarcasm – that is often not clear in a text-based medium!

Before you post

Take a little bit of time to think about how others will see your posts. How you will feel about them in 1-5-10 years time.

  • Status updates – What will my friends and family feel if they read this? What would a stranger think if they read it without knowing any context? 
  • Hashtags – Check the content for the hashtag that you want to use. It may not be used how you expect it to be.
  • Photos – Do you have permission to post photos if they are of someone else? They may not want their photo publicly visible.
  • Selfies – How will this photo look to family, friends and potential employers? Don’t post it if there is any alcohol or silly behaviour, or worse, lewd behaviour!

Respect others’ right to privacy

Sharing secrets without permission is frowned upon. It’s the same with personal information. Unless you have permission, don’t post personal details about other people, including photos, and especially if it is potentially embarrassing or hurtful.

Teach your children to share with care

Have a chat to your kids about these issues, and help them learn to share with care – think about how what they post affects others now, and how it could be perceived in the future.

We hope you find these tips useful! Keep an eye on future posts for more about how you, your family and your colleagues can stay safe online.
 
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and this first week’s theme is Cyber Safety Starts at Home. For more information about
NCSAM and StaySafeOnline, please visit staysafeonline.org/ncsam