Online Privacy Tips

Read these 4 Online Privacy Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Chat tips and hundreds of other topics.

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How do private rooms allow you to leave the crowd behind?

Private rooms

Most chat communities offer the ability to chat in private rooms. The conversations and activities that take place in private rooms is rarely monitored although the usual Terms of Service and Community Standards rules apply. Private rooms are created by one person. The person who created the private room, then, invites other people/person into the room and gives them a room name. No one else can enter the room unless they know the room name. Private rooms serve two important functions. If you are exchanging sensitive or personal information and don't wish to be "overheard", a private room can keep other chatters out of your conversation. Private rooms are also a great way to avoid chatters that cause you trouble. Don't let the phrase "Private Room" fool you. There is no such thing as true or total privacy online. Make sure to review your chat company's privacy policy before jumping into a private room. It's important to know how closely the company monitors and logs all communications.

How to protect your personal information online?

Personal information

The only way to be completely safe online is to never share your personal information with another chatter. Anything from your last name, social security number, or even the view out of your window can be used to locate you. Don't be fooled by friendly strangers. Sometimes the nature of an online chat warrants more personal information sharing, so make sure you have and operate chat security. If you are participating in a chat room that is based on a common interests, age, or geographic location be sure to be extra careful to share only the minimum necessary amount of information. If you do decide to share your personal information with an online contact or friend be sure to let someone you trust know that you've made contact with a person online.

Is it a good idea to share your pictures online?

Sharing pictures

Sharing pictures online to keep in touch with friends and family. You can post them on your website, email them, and even share picture files and transfer them in most chat software. It is important to be aware that any picture you post online can be copied or manipulated. If you regularly post personal pictures online be sure to password protect the webpage where the pictures reside. Give the password only to people that you want to have access to your images. Many online chat sites are focused on dating, relationships, and other types of personal encounters. Make sure that you are chatting with a company that keeps your private information (name, phone number, address) secure. Making friends and other personal connections with people online and around the world is one of the greatest features of the Internet. Make sure as you make these connections that you apply the same commons sense and technical savvy you would to any first time meeting.

How to control whatyour kids do online?

Parental Control

Online privacy tips: Parental Controls help protect your kids online. You decide who they communicate with and which Web sites they access. This usually works by letting you block or approve specific web sites or categories of sites. Sometimes you can even set controls up so your child has to ask permission to access blocked sites. You set when and how long your kids can be online – usually you set controls by day, time of day or session length. With many parental control services you can also receive reports that detail your kids' online activities. You can also help your child interact with friends by creating a list of approved e-mail addresses and user names (for instant messaging). You can create separate controls for each child, and can usually get customized levels of protection based on your childrens' age. Some parental controls can even be accessed remotely. When you set up parental controls, the controls you've chosen for your child remain in place, even if they use a different browser on your home PC.

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Guru Spotlight
Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.