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Top Tips to Stay Safe on Social Media

Social Media is an outlet that is widely used today by multiple generations, individuals and organisations. Furthermore, a social media campaign can spread rapidly, either causing a positive or detrimental effect on a person’s reputation, or a business. Staying safe and being wise with words online is so important, making one tiny mistake could have adverse implications on one’s career.

When recruiting, any potential employer can access a candidates’ online profiles, across various platforms. Ensuring what employees chose to share online with friends and family is sensible, is the number one tip for staying safe. Along with privacy settings, the content should be carefully considered. Remembering that once something is online, it is almost always never fully removed, should be kept in mind. It will be in an archive somewhere, which unfortunately means it could be found.

Furthering changes to the GDPR laws earlier this year, candidates have to be told if they are being checked online at any stage during the recruitment process. A recent survey found that in 2017, 70% of employers use social media to check their applicants before making decisions.

For recruiters, considering whether a social media check is necessary for a junior position is a tip we can advise. For more help and advice on this, please get in touch, we’d be happy to help.

Another top tip for staying safe and appropriate on social media sites is; never post a picture of someone without their prior consent. By doing so, the person who posts the image is held responsible for the posting, therefore have to respect another’s wishes if it needs to be removed. This is a big responsibility and one that can easily be avoided, by simply asking the person first. For example, the number of celebrities who have got into trouble for an offensive tweet they posted in the past, is unmeasurable. Anyone is able to gain access to these tweets, so carefulness is crucial.

Before signing a contract for any new position, it is so important to take time to read the small print. A lot of companies, especially big firms, have social media policies in place and if these are disrespected, the result could be disciplinary action. Usually, this includes to never post about the company in which an employee works for, or colleagues, online. This can easily be misinterpreted as cyber-bullying or inappropriate behaviour, despite whether or not it is done outside of work.

With social media comes a list of pros and cons. Of course, the likes of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are great tools for building brand awareness, reputation and allowing the public to stay up-to-date with companies of interest. When involved with the online presence of a company, familiarisation with the employee guidelines is extremely important. Staying careful and using these tools wisely will be great for business, however, once a bad decision has been made, the outcome could be unimaginable.

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