A blog is a great way to connect with an abundance of people, including those you have never met before, but it’s equally as important to protect your privacy and security in the process. Having the knowledge and tools to keep your personal information behind-the-scenes of your blog private and secure is essential to safeguard yourself, your children and your business.
Whether you’re blogging as a new mom, a business owner or a long-time writer, we’ve compiled a list of ways to help you blog safely while still sharing your thoughts, ideas and message with the world.
Many of us want to share our informative and inspirational blog posts with as many people as possible, but we don’t necessarily want those people having access to our personal email address or calling us at home. When creating a blog, consider using a temporary email site like 10 Minute Mail, which allows you to provide an email address when necessary without leaving a long-term contact or creating a blog-specific email address (e.g. email@example.com). If you must provide a phone number, consider a disposable number from Google Voice.
Limiting personal information contained within your blog is paramount in protecting your privacy (and identity). In fact, many privacy experts recommend limiting the use of your children’s names (use nicknames) and photos in order to safeguard their identity as well. (We recommend checking out this thought-provoking article, "Does Sharing Photos of Your Children on Facebook Put Them at Risk?" for more information.) Another way to keep your personal information personal is by not divulging the town or city you live in (or other recognizable landmarks).
Create Your Own Domain
When creating your own domain, think about paying for the private domain registration, which ensures that the contact information used to buy the domain is kept private. Websites like GoDaddy.com and Domain.com offer packages that allow you to control what information is publicized in the WhoIs Directory.
Secure Your Passwords
It’s becoming increasingly easier to have your private information become public, and that holds true for passwords as well. When choosing a password for your blog, create something unique that will be hard to decipher. Utilize uppercase letters, numbers and symbols to make your password stronger. If you’re still using your birthday as a password, it’s time to update to something more secure, check out Webroot’s article “How Do I Create a Strong Password” for tips on making your passwords more secure. We also recommend taking the time to read: The Internet's 25 Worst Passwords, and What They Say About You.
You may be surprised to see how much personal information is available when you Google your own name. If you’re not sure what is out there, perform several test searches of your name, nicknames and surnames to see what people can access. This will give you a starting point to know what information is available to the public, so you can begin to regain your privacy by removing the information.
Blogs are a great way to share everything from your favorite fall fashion trends to an intimate story about cancer survival, but it’s important to know who can access your blog and how to control your privacy settings. Do you have ways to keep you blog safe and secure? Share your tips in the comments below!