Online Narcissism – An Unexpected Security Threat

Digital Security

Being important, well known and well received has been at the top of many peoples lists of overall life goals for hundreds of years. As a species, we naturally crave attention and acknowledgement from people, which can be achieved through various means, whether legitimate or not. With the rise of the digital age, most people now have an online presence; where they can engage with friends, send messages and share memories at any time of the day, wherever they are.

This is something that was not previously possible, but with this change in lifestyle, there has come to be some who have taken having an online life to a completely different level, a level in which they put a large emphasis on collecting digital friends and tokens of approval, such as likes or re-tweets, with no regard to who they are connecting with or receiving praise from. Not only do these people crave a lot of interpersonal recognition, it also has to be portrayed online too.

With this, there is an obvious opportunity for hackers to take advantage and gain from it. By making contact with an egocentric person online, the hacker can effectively extract valuable information, through the means of flattery and appraisal, which can be used against the user at a later date to take control of owned web platforms, such as social media pages and websites. In the wrong hands, significant damage could be caused against the cyber crime victim, which could cause them to lose credibility, connections or even their livelihood.

You may be thinking that online narcissism is limited to younger demographics, but you would be wrong. Some in prestigious business positions have fallen for ego stroking techniques used by online criminals, which has caused the loss of profits and even jobs, all for the attainment of recognition from others. No matter how old those who possess narcissistic personalities are, a desire for masses of followers online can always present the potential for inviting criminals into your virtual world.

Code Skull

It is important to consider the security of your own web properties, no matter who you are or how high you are on the digital hierarchy. Making a conscious effort to only engage with or accept requests from online users that you know is a solid piece of advice, as making contact with those who are foreign to you can only seek to induce the potential for negative actions, especially if you are a user that shares excessively across networking platforms.

When sharing an excess of personal information online, criminals can use this knowledge to formulate potential password combinations. If you are someone who uses the same password (or very similar) for a wide variety of different services, it could pose devastating consequences upon your digital life, reputation and finance, which can also be reciprocated in reality too. So, it is essential to asses who you are connected with online, in order to make sure that you are not connected to suspicious or peculiar users that you are not familiar with.

To summarise, it must be remembered that the satisfaction of a high follower count on digital networks or masses of praise and attention from large post volumes should never succeed the desire to stay safe online. If compromised, it could not only impact you digitally, but in person too, which may have potentially damaging consequences for not only yourself, but also your family or even the business that you work for or own.

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