CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Just when you thought you had mastered it all, now comes a new social network called Google+. Right now it is invitation only but when you get that invite, we want you to be prepared on how to protect yourself online.
It's the new hip and cool place to be on the internet. According to a survey by internet survey firm Hitwise, as of July 16, Google+ was in the top 45 most-visited social networking sites in the US.
It was also in the top 650 places most visited on the web and it's not even available to the general public yet!
If you have been fortunate enough to get an invite, you have been testing it out and comparing and contrasting it to Facebook. WBTV's cyber expert, Theresa Payton, was one of the early beta testers and she's impressed but also has some warnings for our viewers.
FACTS ABOUT GOOGLE+
- YOUNG PEOPLE ARE FLOCKING THERE: The largest age group is the 25-34 age bracket followed by those in the 18-34 years of age.
- SELECTIVE SHARING: It's easier than Facebook to be selective about sharing. Each time you post a message, it prompts you to choose what "Circles" of friends, work colleagues or other people you want to share it with.
It's fun but Theresa notes that during her beta testing she has some security and privacy concerns. She highlighted three of them for WBTV viewers:
SECURITY AND PRIVACY CONCERNS:
1. ANYONE ON GOOGLE+ CAN EMAIL YOU:
Even though Google+ does not show your email address, unless you change your initial profile. Go to your profile and set your visibility profile to give you more privacy.
2. ANYONE CAN RESHARE YOUR POSTS:
Unless you choose "Disable reshare" your posts can be reposted.
3. VIDEO CHATS WITH ANYONE ARE SCARY EASY:
Kids on Google+? They can schedule "Start a Hangout" and begin group chat within seconds.
Learn More About Google+ at: https://plus.google.com/welcome
Google+ Has Posted a YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwnJ5Bl4kLI
Great "How to" Guide for Google+: http://mashable.com/2011/07/16/google-plus-guide/
WORD OF THE WEEK: