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Corporate Responsibility in Action

What I Learned at the Net Impact Conference - Tips for Staying Safe Online

Created: 30 Oct 2013
Cecily Joseph's picture
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Last weekend I had the pleasure of participating in the Net Impact conference, the leading forum for next generation leaders who want to use their careers for good. The conference attracted approximately 3,000 attendees who ranged from students to C-suite executives driving sustainability at Fortune 500 companies. We met for three days of stimulating speeches, workshops and networking. I moderated a lively panel discussion on the topic of staying safe online and corporate responsibility in the age of social media with panelists including Symantec’s Marian Merritt, our Norton Internet Safety Advocate; Michael Kaiser, executive director of the National Cyber Security Alliance; and Henk Campher, senior vice president, Business & Social Purpose and managing director, Sustainability at Edelman. Keeping people’s information safe online is at the core of Symantec’s business and a focal point for corporate responsibility, so we were excited about the dialogue sparked by the panel.

We answered several audience questions, and in reply our panel experts agreed that it’s up to you to be a responsible user of social media and they provided these tips to help you protect your data:

  • Regularly check privacy settings on all services that you use; Facebook and Twitter are constantly changing their privacy policies. Two-factor authentication is important to prevent some of the worst hacks, since it requires you to enter in another piece of information besides your password.
  • Go to and see what information free mobile apps/games have access to, and you will be shocked.
  • Don’t share anything online you’re not willing to share with the world.
  • Be thoughtful about the impact of what you’re saying online.
  • Put a Google alert on your name; it’s a great way to know where your name is showing up.
  • Be aware of who is following you on social media.
  • Have a password for every device, including smartphones.

These tips, and discussion around how to be responsible online in this age of social media, made for an informative panel discussion, and one I could relate to as a new Twitter user who is still trying to figure out the rules. Follow me @CecilyJosephCR and share more tips you’ve found helpful. The safer you and I become, the safer the Internet will be for all online!

The panel was just one part of a successful weekend at the New Impact conference. I had the opportunity to meet inspiring students and professionals who I will look forward to seeing more from in the coming year. I can’t wait for Net Impact 2014!

Cecily Joseph is Symantec's Vice President, Corporate Responsibility