Social media can be a great way to stay in touch with your family and friends. With millions of users online, it is a great way to follow the activities of your loved ones or attract new friends by connecting online. But over-sharing your personal information and not taking precautions to safeguard your privacy can be a be a big security risk. Here are some ways sharing on social media can be a major security risk.

Your identity could be stolen.

Since many social media websites allow users to share personal information about their birthdays, family members, places they have lived in addition to posts about their daily activities, this makes it very easy for identity thieves to steal this information.

Identify thieves can then use this information to reset passwords or open new accounts. You should take precaution to minimize the personal information you share, and you may want to change your social media security settings so that your information can only be viewed by your trusted friends.

Revealing your location can leave you vulnerable.

Some social media sites have features that allow users to identify the location of their friends and contacts. While this may be great for finding friends nearby, it also can leave you vulnerable to potential burglars who can ensure that you are not in your home. Posting vacation photos in real-time can let people know that you are not in your home.

Your other accounts can become hacked.

Hackers and identity thieves use social media sites because they can steal your identity, inject viruses to your computer, or access your personal information. Shortened URLs, such as those created on bit.ly, can also trick users into visiting compromised sites where personal information can be stolen because they cannot easily view the full URL. Always be careful about clicking on websites and links that are not secure.

Overall, you should make sure your information can only be seen by your friends and do not share anything on social media that can be a potential security risk.