Facebook, if it were a country, would be considered the 8th largest in the world! That is a lot of people who can potentially see the content you are posting.

Yesterday, you may have read the article about protecting yourself when it comes to social networking. On the same lines, it is very important to ensure you are protecting the University of Louisville, or whoever your employer may be, when you are using social networking sites.

UofL is governed by more than 350 different regulations in some way or another, and some of those regulations (e.g. HIPAA, FERPA, PCI-DSS, etc.) are in place to protect client data. Other than regulations, there are many contracts that the university enters into that protect data and information brought forth in the contracts. With all of the regulations and contracts that UofL is covered under, it is important to not let down your guard when posting content on a social networking site.

If your job falls is in an area governed by one of the many regulations or contracts, here are some tips to think about before posting work-related information on a social networking site.

  • Do not post any sensitive information about UofL or its clients. For example, do not talk about how hard it was to interview a specific research subject today.
  • Do not post anything work-related that could be used against you. Do not only think about sensitive information, but could the information be used against you concerning your job performance? For example, you may not want to call in sick then post about how fun it was to hang out with friends today.
  • Be cautious of connecting with clients on non-job-related social networking sites.
  • If you do connect with clients, remember, they can see everything you post, and they have access to your personal life.

Already there have been court cases where an employee posted private health information, a juror on a criminal case posted the verdict before it was read, and employers sued or fired an employee for posting derogatory claims. In the cases where private information was released, the organization and the employee have been held liable in civil and sometimes criminal court.

It is important to remember, once something is posted, it can never be fully deleted. Protect yourself and your organization by using caution when posting work-related notes on social networking sites. If you have any questions or concerns about safe social networking, please contact UofL’s Information Security Office.

(Editor’s Note: This is the last in a series of articles for Compliance Awareness Week at UofL.)