4 Ways Social Media Identity Monitoring Can Protect You

Written By Mary Beth Eastman
Last updated November 23, 2019

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January 9, 2018

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

More than 80 percent of people in the United States have social media accounts. While this helps keep friends and relatives connected, it also creates an opportunity for hackers to steal access to personal accounts and leaves them vulnerable to identity theft. Once hackers have access to your profiles on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, they can steal your identity and scam your closest friends into giving them money or sensitive information that helps them steal even more identities.

Using a social media identity monitoring (SMIM) service, like Social Media ID monitoring from IdentityForce, can help protect you and your loved ones from these risks. When you choose a SMIM service, look for the following four features.

Suspicious activity monitoring reviews social media posts and messages to weed out content intended to bully or intimidate users. The service typically monitors posts for subjects like drugs, sex, violence and bullying. It can also identify messages that contain profane or otherwise inappropriate language.

Suspicious activity monitoring works well for adults and children. Considering that about half of adolescents and teenagers say that they’ve been bullied online, it makes sense for parents to use suspicious activity monitoring to protect their children.

Nearly two-thirds of American adults who use social media believe that their accounts have been hacked. Hacked account monitoring scans your social media accounts to find warning signs like changes to security settings and locked profiles. By using SMIM services with this feature, you can take an active stance against social media hacking.

The earlier you discover that someone has gained access to your account, the sooner you can take steps to prevent identity theft and other scams.

Social media companies rarely check profiles to make sure they belong to the right people. Anyone can create a profile that impersonates you. According to Facebook’s estimates, about 31 million of its accounts are impostors.

SMIM scans social media platforms to find profiles that might try to impersonate your identity. If a fake profile has the same personal information as your real account, then SMIM can bring the situation to your attention.

Since social media platforms encourage users to share posts with each other, sites like Facebook and Twitter have become one of the easiest ways for scammers to find victims. Scam monitoring informs you when a suspicious post or message gets sent to you. By keeping you informed, SMIM makes it simple for you to delete potential scams before you have a chance to become a victim.

SMIM provides a variety of services to help you stay safe online. Before you choose a Social Media Identity Monitoring suite, though, you should make sure it offers the features that you need.

About the Author

Mary Beth Eastman

Mary Beth Eastman serves as the content manager for Simple. Thrifty. Living, where she is dedicated to helping readers use money and credit wisely. Mary Beth believes that access to the right financial information paired with a growth mindset are essential tools for getting out of debt and building wealth. Mary Beth has a degree in Journalism from Bowling Green State University and has focused her 20-year journalism career on putting readers front and center, carefully considering their concerns and presenting information that will help them in their everyday lives. She has won numerous statewide journalism awards. Her writing on personal finance as been featured on numerous websites in addition to Simple. Thrifty. Living, including Huffington Post and Lexington Law blog. Mary Beth resides in Pittsburgh, Pa., with her family and two rescue dogs.

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