Social networking websites are rising in prominence in every aspect of an average person's lifestyle. This affects people in all spheres, whether it's social, academic, or professional. The information posted on social networking sites is easy to obtain because 1) it is open source information accessible through general search results; and 2) it is usually available through a weak connection. Information that can be easily accessed may include your personally identifiable information (PII), academic and work history, and social networks. Can you imagine stalkers, hackers, identity thieves, or ex-lovers getting hold of this information? Even future employers, security clearance investigators, policemen, classmates, professors, and parents may be able to view your posted information and draw specific conclusions about you as an individual, which could have negative effects.
If you are interested in finding your overall risk then answer the following questions:
- Do you participate on popular social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace, or LinkedIn?
- Do you use various profile actions such as uploading photos, posting media, writing wall posts, etc.?
- Are you friends with other users who may expose you to unknown threats?
If you answered yes to any of these questions then it is likely that you have some level of risk associated with your profile and should perform the step- by-step process of the SNAPR methodology.
The purpose of the Social Networking Action & Privacy Risk (SNAPR) methodology is to evaluate the risk posed to an individual user from information posted on a social networking website, such as Facebook, MySpace, or LinkedIn. SNAPR answers the question, “What risk is posed to an individual with a profile on a social networking website?” The results create decision advantage for users of social networking websites by highlighting the contributing factors of their overall risk.
To begin the methodology process go to step 1.