3 Simple Ways to Clean Up Your Online Presence

Just like you probably would not your grandmother getting a glimpse of you doing a kegstand on St. Patrick’s Day, you do not want prospective employers selecting the next qualified candidate instead of you because of it. In today’s modern day, it is guaranteed potential employers will peruse the internet searching for your LinkedIn profile, Twitter feed and Facebook account. Chances are you most likely have a clean, professional LinkedIn account filled with the essentials like your skills, resume, achievements and recommendations. However, there is a high probability your Twitter and Facebook sites are not as conservative and future employment “safe.”

As a college woman, you must become knowledgeable about employer’s social media screening and realize its beneficial or disastrous side effects. Although there has been a great deal of debate and bill drafting, some prospective employers believe it is their right to ask future employees for their Facebook username and password to ensure they are good citizens and more importantly, good hires. Companies esteem you as a worthwhile investment and want to know you are worth every shiny penny.

The following are three simple tips to clean up your social media so you will not have to fret or worry about any scrutinization.

1. Think before you post. This is the golden rule of social media and includes any form of posts like pictures, tweets, statuses and comments. Before you upload or take any action on a social media website, stop and ask yourself if you would feel embarrassed if a recruiter found it. If an employer seems too distant and you are in the earlier college years, think of your parents or grandparents before publishing.

2. Limit controversy. Refrain from liking controversial topics like religion, politics and any peculiar extracurricular activities others might not understand. For example, while it is acceptable for you to declare yourself a Roman Catholic and follow the Pope’s twitter account, it would not be appropriate to like contentious threads that badmouth abortionists. Also resist the enticing urge to post inebriated photos from your best friend's 21st birthday extravaganza.

3. Set strict privacy settings. Just because you are extra cautious of your online activity does not ensure your friends will not tag you in unbecoming posts or scandalous information. Control your profile’s information by setting privacy settings that require you to approve posts, tags and photos of you before they are published for the world to marvel at. This grants you a significant amount of control and will help reduce any surprises from last week's post-midterm shindig.

It is simple, be smart -- think, limit and protect your profile. Keep in mind the old adage, “the public eye never blinks,” and remember what happens online does not only stay online.

By: Claire Walton | Image: Source

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