With many employers looking at social media activity to screen potential hires, an inappropriate comment or a scandalous photo can come back to haunt you. According to a new survey by FindLaw.com, 29 percent of social media users between the ages of 18 and 34 have posted a photo, comment, or other personal information they fear will one day hurt their job prospects.

Another 21 percent of users admitted taking down posts or photos they felt employers may frown upon. For social media users who’ve never taken steps to clean up and safeguard their social media accounts, now is the time to get started. Below, you’ll find some tips to help you responsibly manage your social media presence.

Check Your Privacy Settings

Most social media platforms allow you to customize the types of information you share with the public. You should check these settings frequently, since the terms of service are constantly changing.

Think Before You Post

Take a minute to mull over any potentially damaging messages or photos before posting them. You should always assume that your boss or prospective employers will someday see the comment or photo. Err on the side of caution.

Limit Personal Information

Not all of the information social media sites request is required of you. Try to limit the amount of personal information you divulge to the essentials. You never know who’s going to access the information and for what purpose.

Seek Legal Help

While most people who are fired believe they were unfairly let go, the legal definition of wrongful termination is limited to circumstances where an employee was fired for an illegal reason. If you were fired as a result of your social media activity, the next step is to learn more about your rights and legal options. FindLaw’s Employment Law Center offers consumers a wide range of articles and resources on wrongful termination claims, workplace discrimination, the hiring process, and much more.

Michelle Croteau, Director of Marketing Communications
with Corey Licht, FindLaw Audience Team

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