I sometimes hear people say that they are afraid to use social media. There are too many bad things that can happen. Their house will get robbed when that person just waiting on Facebook to rob them, sees that they have checked in at a local restaurant. (If you have your Facebook privacy settings configured correctly, the only people who are going to see your check-ins are people that you have allowed access to your profile and I sure hope they aren’t going to rob you!)
Still other people are afraid to post pictures of their kids or grandkids because that creep lurking on social networks will want to kidnap them. And of course don’t ever pay for anything online because you wouldn’t want to have your credit card number out there. Instead, be safe. Order by phone and give all of it, including your security code, to a total stranger located who knows where.
I tell these people it is like a hammer. Sure you COULD hurt someone with it, but when it is used in the way it was designed, there is no better tool for the job. That is why I was so pleased when I saw a story about a woman who found a kidney donor for her dying mother via social media! Now that is using a great tool exactly as it was designed.
So if you are one of those folks a little leery of using social networks, my advice is “do your homework first.” Find out which networks would most easily and efficiently fit into your lifestyle and connect you with friends and family in ways that are useful to you. And read the help files and make sure you are following the steps to secure your information according to that network’s best practices. You never know when you might need some special help for you or a loved one, and it just might come from a Facebook friend or a Twitter follower!