1. Customize your social network privacy settings

On each social networking site you use, customize your privacy settings to make sure that you are in control of what you are sharing and with whom you are sharing it.

2. Remember, it's public

Social networking sites cannot guarantee the security of the information you post, regardless of the privacy settings you might have in place.

3. Use discretion

While you may meet new friends online, you may also come into contact with internet thieves or predators who want to exploit you through the information you post. Don't disclose personal information like your cell phone number, address or class schedule.

4. Talking about locations

It's exciting to tell your friends where you are or where you are about to go. However, you should be careful about publicly announcing that you will be away for extended periods.  

5. The Grandma Rule

Ask yourself if you would want your Grandma to see it. If the answer is no, you probably shouldn't post it.

    • Employers are using social networking sites to "get to know" and weed out applicants. Don't let those party photos come back to haunt you in the future.
    • What you post might also affect others besides yourself, whether it's a photo that includes other people or comments about someone you know.

6. Be responsible

Don't post anything that's illegal or goes against university policies (student or employee), including copyrighted material without the content owner's permission.

7. Realize that you can't take it back

Once you publish something online, it is available to other people and to search engines. Even if you try to remove pages from the Internet, someone may have saved a copy of the page or used excerpts in another source. Search engines and browsers also "cache" web pages to load them faster, making them available even after a page was deleted.