Social media is now a constant in the majority of people’s lives, with Facebook being used by over 1.7 billion people daily – a huge percentage of the global population. However, despite how much time society spends posting, commenting, liking, and sharing online, there are still many secrets and tidbits that you may not know.
Social media is more than just a place to connect with your friends. These days, it’s a news resource and a business platform, which changes the ways it can be used.
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It’s the number one destination for advertising
Social media has become the prime location for advertising, so much so that even the shortest session online will expose you to adverting and branded posts. The reason for this is that advertising online is remarkably cheap compared to more traditional platforms such as print and television, and it reaches a huge volume of people.
The advertising goes far beyond the obvious banner ads across the tops of website homepages, as many of the blogs, articles, and videos you engage with are expertly crafted content to influence you to check out a business’s profile or click a link to a product.
Social media is an attractive destination for people with bad intent, and there are many things people can do on social media to deceive you and cause harm.
One big potential risk is fake accounts. These can come in all manner of different forms, with accounts mimicking celebrities to entice interaction with unsuspecting fans, accounts stealing other people’s identities, or bot accounts. One study suggests that at least 15% of all Twitter accounts are bots, which are fake accounts made by an algorithm to post either politically charged content or hazardous links to malware software.
Another potential risk is that personal information can be taken from your account if you’re not secure with it. Depending on what you share, hackers and online criminals can use your address, name, phone number, friends and family, and place of work against you in a multitude of different ways. That’s why it’s important that you never share personal information and have your account set to private, so only friends can interact with you.
To maximize safety, you can use social media threat monitoring to evaluate the potential risks on each platform.
It’s not just for the younger generation
The internet, and thus social media, is usually associated with younger adults. However, there’s been evidence to suggest that the 55-64-year-old demographic is growing on virtually all platforms and is the fastest-growing demographic on Twitter. This can be extremely surprising, due to the nature of social media and the often-immature content that goes viral.
However, it’s believed that this demographic is using social media for far different purposes than their younger counterparts. For a lot of older people, social media has become a practical resource, and they are thus engaging with more logical and factual content. For some, social media has become their main news source, both locally and globally, due to how fast information can spread, making it a great place to get information quickly.