The Essence or Not of Internet Presence -

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The Essence or Not of Internet Presence

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I hear about Internet presence everyday while working online. Websites and online businesses are aiming to establish web presence. Thus, the use of various strategies is in demand including social media, article marketing, directory submission, back linking, and the like. So thank be for the essence of Internet presence! Its importance is providing millions of jobs to freelancers worldwide.

I won’t be expounding on the essence of Internet presence for business and marketing experts though, I was pondering upon the thought of being rampantly present all over the web. It’s one of those days when boredom took its toll and I have nothing to do, even online. So I started Googling my name, usual username, and email addresses. Voila! Numerous accounts, profiles, pages, and sites came up in about 5 pages or more of Google’s search results.

I started checking them all one by one. There were forum community posts (like this PinoyExchange thread on Harry Potter.), Yahoo groups (linkinpark_philippines and linkinparkaddicts), Blogger blogs, and accounts in an unbelievable number of sites. I almost always use the same username every time as well as the same email address. Obviously, I have the same name as I don’t make up pseudonyms other than for the username itself. Surprisingly, some of the PinoyExchange forum posts were dated all the way back 12 years ago (2000). I even chanced upon a long abandoned blog which I was able to re-open. It’s deleted now.

Doing that lead me to reunite with old friends, people I’ve met online about a decade ago. Although our connection is still limited to the web (Facebook), at least I know they remain as friends of mine. I also met a new found friend through one of the groups over Yahoo – HunterXHunter. I even discovered about updates to the new manga Chimera Ant Arc because of it.

And while I chanced upon old and new friends after searching for personal Internet presence, there were people I couldn’t find anymore, not even on social network sites. It makes me wonder where they are. I would simply hope that they’re doing good.

In relation to the essence of Internet presence, is it really essential to a regular person? Someone who is not associated with online jobs and web businesses? The answer is yes and no. Yes, it is important for us who work in this industry as even our personal blogs and social media accounts are used to apply for work. It is also necessary to stay connected with family and friends worldwide. It becomes a medium to reconnect with long lost acquaintance and everyone we know as well. Not to mention the fact that we constantly communicate with everybody online. Even with the seemingly GM-like (general message) “hi” and “hello.”

On the other hand, it’s a no because Internet presence steals a few things we so cherish and place importance with. The most prominent of these is privacy. I know of a forum moderator who said he deleted his Google+ profile because his full name is showing up on Google search results. If you didn’t notice yet, that applies to Facebook too as well as handful of other sites you may have signed up for or provided your full name with.

So if you’re comfortable with seeing your name popup in search results, best to not provide your PII (personally identifiable information) which include your name, address, contact info, and other pertinent details. But I do know many would even pay for fame though. J

Aside from privacy concerns, there is also an issue with fraudulence. Not to be a scaremonger, but there are people who steal identity’s online for fraudulent activities. Worst, they steal your money too through online transactions. In relation to this, it’s best not to provide any info to sites you are not familiar with, especially if you are using a public computer. Also, don’t save your password when logging in. Better remember it and make a different one for differing sites. There is also a need to regularly clear your browser’s cache and cookies so none of your browsing history becomes accessible to spyware in case there is any.

Besides taking care of your browser, certain software are useful as well in preventing malware, viruses, Trojan, and the like. It is recommended to install anti-virus programs or Internet security suites. They prevent possible problems before they even happen. If you are using Chrome, the browser even warns you of sites which are infected and are blacklisted in Google. The bottom line here is to prevent instead of curing.

Going back to the essence of Internet presence, the pros and cons mentioned above will be able to help you decide whether or not web presence is advantageous for you. As for me, I have nothing to hide and I’m no celebrity either so my name, username, and email showing up won’t be a problem. I’m also cautious when it comes to online transactions so my information cannot be easily retrieved. Heck, even my email account (at least Gmail) cannot be accessed with the password alone. A verification code is needed and can only be retrieved through my mobile device. I’ll post more about this some other time.

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