In the days where data leaks can ruin companies and individuals, being fearful of your privacy and communication online is natural. Beginning the foundations of future online reputation defense can never start too early. Trying to protect yourself (and your reputation) from data breeches and other damaging activity early on should be top priority, but before full-on actual online reputation management should take over, are there really any steps you can take to protect your good name and your sensitive data immediately?
The ins and outs of social media security and privacy might initially overwhelm the personal branding newbie. One might be tempted to shy away from social media exposure altogether. However, you and your business will have a social media footprint, and having some of it under your control is the best way to prevent malicious third parties from jeopardizing your reputation.
Becoming the director of your own reputation means taking responsibility for how you present yourself. Be active yet mindful of how you present yourself or your business in social media. This also includes taking steps to prevent confidential data, both private and proprietary, from being leaked into more public social media outlets.
As the saying goes, if it’s private, it shouldn’t be on Facebook. Understanding the importance of keeping things under lock and key isn’t just good personal safety advice; it is also the step to take in securing the integrity of your reputation. Take extra steps to police your own communication within social media to restrict the sharing of sensitive data to only the most dire of necessities and to ensure that, when sharing, the appropriate settings are enabled. Finally, when the need arises, ensuring the safety of more sensitive communication may also require utilizing specific services that keep information from being tracked.
The opening moves may seem confusing at first, but not playing the game at all is the sure-fire way to lose. Keeping a low and clean profile in the digital age is a labor that’ll give Hercules a run for his money. Once achieved, however, you’ve given yourself and your business a key advantage over anything that may come your way. Build and protect your reputation through good judgment on what should stay private in social media and through better control of what goes in and on your online footprint.