by James Jones
A new study reveals the commonly accepted belief that college students in the United States were the most cautious users of social media was absolutely unfounded. The study, performed by the Collegiate Academic Resource Group, a collective group of academics from across the Northeast. With the dependency on social media and digital networking, identity theft is a rising concern, but maybe not so much to the future leaders of tomorrow.
Social media profiles and postings from June 2010 to June 2012 of 5,000 undergraduate students were collected and analyzed. Profiles were divided into the following categories:
Red: Highest risk for identity theft, failure to graduate and long term employment in fast food.
Orange: High risk for identity theft, likely to scrape by with a degree, projected average job tenure: 1.2 years.
Yellow: Low/Medium risk for identity theft, expected to graduate and find stable employment.
Green: Low/No risk for identity theft, shared no significant personal information or nude photos.
Interestingly enough, every one of the 3% of students in the green category followed Lifelock on LinkedIn and were Facebook friends with at least one grandparent. The most egregious cases of over sharing came from the red group, though within the red group males and females were not found to share at disparate levels.
Twitter No-No’s About Your No-No’s
One student, a 21 year-old junior, live-tweeted a visit to the school clinic where he was tested for STDs after what he called “an epic night of lady humping,” an event which was also documented via Twitter and Instagram, all of which fed into his Facebook profile. Of the seven females pictured, all were identified with tags and only one photo had fewer than 75 comments.
Tumbling with Class
A female sophomore, 19, actively bidding for internships at several prestigious law firms posted the following on her Tumblr feed with a photo [redacted] attached:
“Best nite (sic) eva (sic)!!!!!!! Peace out [Dorm Name redacted] I’m moving to [Address redacted] with my gurrrrlzz (sic) [3 names and profile links [redacted] on the 11th and then we r (sic) going to Vegas for 4 fantastic dayzzzzzzz (sic). So happy that I don’t even mind I flashed the hole (sic) bar [while I was] puking on the dance floor tonight.”
Researchers said they expect these results were “simply an anomaly” and next year’s results should reflect their initial thesis that college students are among the most responsible and upstanding citizens in the nation.