Researchers have pointed out the risks of using Facebook and other social media networking sites. These sites become channels for spreading gossips and feeding ugly rumors. A more serious threat is the invasion of privacy. They become vulnerable to hacking, phishing, and harassment. Thus, there is a need for users to change their attitudes like being vigilant and careful in sharing information on these social networking sites. These findings were supported by a research done by Denise Agosto and June Abbas about older teen’s perceptions and behaviors concerning online privacy and their safety attitudes. Their respondents knew that there was no true privacy online and they felt discomfort in sharing information with those unintended audiences who could have access to all the information you shared online. Despite these perceptions, they still felt the need to share information to get approval from their peers and get a larger social audience. They disregarded whatever discomfort they felt just to earn the approval of other people. This shows that there is a need to teach the younger generation about being responsible and cautious social media users so that they can enjoy its benefits without putting themselves at risk.
Social media networking sites have changed the ways we connect with other people. Depending on how we use it, we can use social media to benefit from it. Its advantages include developing social connectedness, enhancing our sense of belongingness, and contributing to our overall well-being. It should be noted however that we can only reap the benefits of using social media when we use it responsibly. We should, therefore, think before we click, be mindful of our boundaries, and be accountable to others and others that what we post represent our real selves. When we do not do this, we put ourselves and even our loved ones at risk. There are dangers in the online world such as cyberbullying, harassment, and invasion of privacy. Hence, we should be responsible users of social media and always exercise caution when sharing information online so that these will not be used against us.