Messing With Scammers

Image result for internet scammersI got a text in the last hour from a source who said they were Verizon and that my phone data and phone account is now locked. I needed to contact a specific number. Now, considering my recent awareness and update of my data plan, I simply knew this was not the case. So I thought of calling them back using a different number (like the church’s fax line – do we have a fax line?) or a pay phone. But I don’t think Evergreen, Virginia has a pay phone. I was going to call and just give a lot of bogus info just to mess with them.

Interestingly, a recent poll said a lot of people trust phone companies to protect their privacy. I mean Apple has some great security procedures. What a majority of Americans don’t trust is social media platforms. There are a lot of reasons to be weary of social media apps – and some just has to do with idiotic postings of ranters and idgits. Some has to do with obvious slants of the businesses themselves. And some are just tired of the cat videos – I mean, how many do you have to see to realize dog videos are simply better. But a big issue is privacy. What do they do with your information? Who has access to your account? Are the pictures you post yours, everyones, or now the property of FaceBook? And how come items I delete seem to reappear? And it seems every update makes me redo security settings?

After National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden disclosed details about government surveillance programs starting in 2013, 30% of adults said they took steps to hide or shield their information and 22% reported they had changed their online behavior in order to minimize detection. (from Pew Research) Here are some basics you can do to help security while using these sites ..
– Keep checking your privacy settings regularly
– Always create strong passwords and use different passwords for different sites
– Ensure that people you connect to/follow/add as friend must be known to you
– Always analyze your post before posting
– Never enter/ click suspicious links
– Never forget to set up your security answers
– Always keep an anti-virus installed and updated on your computer/ phone
– Never leave a site logged in

But what does all this mean in our life when we look for a positive use of social media. Relevant Media had a great article on 8 things Christians need to do more of on social media. Here they are …
1 – strive for connection, not attention
2 – be transparent, but not too transparent
3 – ask yourself: could I say this same thing in front of someone?
4 – don’t buy into the “Say what needs to be said” culture
5 – learn to listen better
6 – avoid stirring the pot with the articles you share
7 – no racist comments
8 – avoid being mean to bloggers

Social media is a great tool – just be cautious. And through it all – do it all for the glory of God.

See you tomorrow.

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