Keeping Social Networking, Privacy Settings, and Mobile Apps Secure | Coppin State University

Keeping Social Networking, Privacy Settings, and Mobile Apps Secure

Coppin State University is a National Cyber Security Awareness Month Champion Published Monday, October 07th, 2019

Learn how to stay safe online by owning your security.

Social networking allows us to share personal updates while communicating with friends and co-workers across the globe. While these convenient technologies keep us connected, are you putting yourself at risk for cyber attackers to watch and learn what you are doing? Do you know how should you conduct yourself online? Are you downloading mobile device apps that put you at risk?

Own your security. Here are a few tips to help you leverage these technologies safely and securely to stay protected:

Use Passphrases

  • Implement a strong, unique passphrase for each account. A passphrase is simply a long password made up of a collection of multiple words, making them both easier to type and remember.
  • Enable multi-factor verification (sometimes referred to as two-step verification or two-factor authentication) whenever it is available. Multi-factor authentication is when you are granted access only after you have successfully provided two or more pieces of evidence, such as your password AND a unique code generated by your smartphone or texted to you via messaging.

Enable Privacy

  • Avoid communicating about sensitive or private details about yourself. Whenever you choose to post information about yourself online, it is good practice to assume any information you post could eventually become public and be used to customize an attack against you. 
  • Enable and customize your privacy controls when you register for a social networking site.
  • Ensure that you are using the current security software, web browser, operating system and apps. These are the best defenses against viruses, malware and other online cyber threats.

Conduct Due Diligence for Third Party Apps

  • Inspect the details when downloading an app or registering for a new network. Only install applications from trusted sources and only install the apps you truly think you need.
  • Review the ratings, reviews, and permissions of any app before you choose to install it. It could be a big red flag if an app is very new, has few or negative reviews, or very few downloads.

Be Suspicious

  • Proceed with caution if you receive any odd or suspicious messages online from a friend. 
  • Do not reply directly via their social media account, as you will be communicating directly with that cyber attacker. Instead, call your friend on the phone to confirm if he or she truly posted the message and needs your help.


For information, contact the IT Security Office at or visit