Seven mistakes that exposes your personal life to online stalkers

While smartphones can be a useful tool for communication and entertainment, it can also expose you to cyber criminals. Picture: Supplied

While smartphones can be a useful tool for communication and entertainment, it can also expose you to cyber criminals. Picture: Supplied

Published Apr 11, 2024


Smartphones have become an indispensable tools that people use everyday, but it can also pose significant risks to your personal privacy and security.

People need to remember that while smartphones can be used for communication and entertainment, they can also be a portal to cyber criminals to hack you.

Alan, a website contributor at Increditools, shares the seven mistakes that leave people open to online stalking, and offers solutions to help protect you.

Location sharing oversights

Mistake: Smartphone users unintentionally share their location through social media platforms, geo-tagged photos, or location-tracking apps which can expose them to potential stalking.

Correction: To avoid exposing yourself, you need to disable location-sharing settings on social media platforms and apps. Don’t geo-tag your photos and consider using a virtual private network (VPN) to mask your IP address and enhance your online anonymity.

Weak password protection

Mistake: People fail to use strong, unique passwords which compromises device security, potentially allowing stalkers to crack your password and eventually gain access to your sensitive data.

Correction: Make use of biometric authentication methods like fingerprint or facial recognition. Have different, complex passwords that are different for each of your online accounts. Two-factor authentication can offer you added security.

Using unsecured Wi-Fi connections

Mistake: By connecting to unsecured Wi-Fi networks, you expose your smartphone to potential hacking and data interception by cyber criminals.

Correction: Avoid connecting to Wi-Fi networks in public areas. Use VPNs or secure mobile hotspots for sensitive activities or transactions on the go.

Neglecting software updates

Mistake: You can leave your smartphone vulnerable to potential stalkers that can gain access to or control your smartphone by ignoring software updates.

Correction: Enable automatic software updates and check for updates manually if automatic updates are not available.

Sharing sensitive information via messaging apps

Mistake: Accidentally sharing sensitive information through messaging apps endangers your safety and security and could give stalkers access to your personal information to work with, or blackmail material.

Correction: Be cautious when you share personal information on messaging apps. Ensure that you have 100% trust in the person you are talking with. Encrypt sensitive files and documents that you have stored on your smartphone.

Neglecting privacy settings on social media profiles

Mistake: By not reviewing or adjusting privacy settings on your social media platforms exposes you to unwanted attention and potential stalking.

Correction: Review and adjust your privacy settings on social media profiles or choose privacy-focused apps and services that prioritise user data protection.

IOL Technology