Updated March 2021
In this article you will learn 10 ways to increase your LinkedIn account’s security and privacy.
In September 2020 LinkedIn released this update about Strengthening our Professional Community Policies to Keep Members Safe, providing at outline of LinkedIn’s updated Professional Community Policies. Along with following these guidelines, there are many ways you can increase your LinkedIn account’s security and privacy.
1. Change Your Password Every Few Months on LinkedIn
Schedule a reminder in your diary to update your LinkedIn password on a regular basis. Here are tips from LinkedIn about how to change your password.
2. Select Strong and Varying Passwords
Select strong passwords, with 10 or more characters, that can’t easily be guessed. Some operating systems suggest strong passwords, which it then saves for future use. Decide a system that works for you. If you work in an open plan space with regular passing traffic, you will need to be extra careful with this option.
3. Avoid Using Words from a Dictionary
Consider a meaningful phrase, song or quote and turn it into a complex password using the first letter of each word. For example, you could randomly add capital letters, punctuation or symbols. You could also substitute numbers for letters that look similar (for example, substitute “0” for “o” or “3” for “E”).
4. Never Give Your Password to Others or Write it Down
The only exception to this rule will be if you have an Assistant who accesses your LinkedIn Profile on your behalf or if you have engaged the services of a professional to update your LinkedIn Profile. Share these details via encrypted message systems such as WhatsApp. In these cases, make sure they have clear terms and conditions in regard to what happens in the case of a violation of your account.
5. Sign Out of Your Account After You Use a Publicly Shared Computer
If you only have the option of accessing your account via a publicly shared computer, always remember to sign out of your account once you’ve finished your session. With the LinkedIn App available on your phone I recommend you use this over logging into your account from a publicly shared computer.
You can review and manage your account information and privacy settings from your settings and privacy page here.
7. Keep Your Antivirus Software Up to Date
In this article from PCMag Neil Rubenking recommends The Best Antivirus Protection For 2020 and suggests that “antivirus software is critical for every PC. Without it, you risk losing your personal information, your files, and even the cash from your bank account”. PCMag tested more than 40 utilities to help you pick the best antivirus protection for your computers.
8. No Contact Details in Profile About Section
Depending on your role, it is unlikely that you need to include your email address in the About section of your LinkedIn profile, as you can add this in your contact information for connections to view. In your privacy settings you can restrict access to your connections viewing your email, which stops new connections from exporting your email and adding you to an email list without your permission (it happens!).
Err on the side of caution here and make these changes in the Privacy section of your profile (pictured above) and accessible here when logged in to your LinkedIn Profile.
9. Consider Two-Step Verification
This can sometimes be more worry than it’s worth, but if you are keen to add that extra layer of security to logging in to your LinkedIn account, consider turning two-step verification on for your account. Here’s how.
10. Report Inappropriate Content or Safety Concerns
I’m vigilant about this one and will block and report any new LinkedIn connections who do the wrong thing. For more information about how to report inappropriate content or safety concerns, visit LinkedIn Help here.
Please note – LinkedIn also prohibits the use of any third party software, including “crawlers”, bots, browser plug-ins, or browser extensions (also called “add-ons”), that scrapes, modifies the appearance of, or automates activity on LinkedIn’s website.
Here’s more from LinkedIn Help about understanding your privacy settings.
As one of Asia Pacific’s Top 10 LinkedIn Experts I share fortnightly news with my global email community and run monthly online Lunch and Learns to teach professionals how to unlock LinkedIn. Sign up to my newsletter to help you learn LinkedIn – the right way!