Sue Scheff: Don’t Get Caught Online Naked!

  • Are you looking for employment?
  • Is your teen applying to colleges?
  • Do you run a small business?
  • Are you dating online?
  • Does your career depend on your reputation?

It’s official; PEW study shows that about 75% of all Americans are using the Internet. More importantly over 53% of people are Googling each other! Do you know what Google is saying about you?

If you fall in any of the categories above, you have reason to be concerned about your virtual image. Being caught naked online doesn’t necessarily mean “butt” naked, however it does mean virtually exposed in ways that may not be flattering to you or your quest in life.

Google Bomb, The Untold Story of the $11.3M Verdict that Changed The Way We Use The Internet, is a great place to start on repairing and/or polishing your online image. Learn from my story, gain from my virtual disaster that lead to an awareness of the power of a keystroke. Google Bomb also offers great tools to help you dress yourself up online.

For more great tips  on maintaining your virtual profile, visit my series on Virtual Vanity.

Order Google Bomb book today and take control of your wardrobe virtually – remember, whether you are applying for a job, going on a date, or interviewing for admissions at a college – chances are very high someone will be Googling you.
 

What is a Google bomb?

Google Bomb (n) or “link bomb”: Internet slang for a certain kind of attempt to raise the ranking of a given page in results from a Google search. (Wikipedia)

Insure your cyber profile.  Learn how to wear your virtual clothes.
 

Also on Examiner.

Advertisements

Sue Scheff: Holiday Gift of Virtual ‘Presence’

Skip the holiday presents – give the gift of virtual presence!
 
The who:

 

The who:

  • *  Help jump-start your potential college applicant/application.
  • *  Out of work?  Learn to promote your skills online.
  • *  Professional or small business owner?  Learn to own and manage your virtual image.

The why:

•53% of Americans Google each other. Pew Internet & American Life
•26% of college admissions officers use search engines to research candidates. University of Massachusetts Center for Market Research
•64% of teens say that most teens do things online that they wouldn’t want their parents to know about. anti-drug.com
•77% of executive recruiters use search engines to research applicants. CareerBuilder

The how:

Tip 1:  Check out your social networking sites.  If there is information or photo’s on there you wouldn’t share with your grandparents, chances are they shouldn’t be on the Internet.  Keep it clean!

Tip 2Sign up for personal branding services.  This is free.  Services such as Naymz, Ziggs, LinkedIn and LookUpPage offer free online profile set-ups.  Take the time to create your cyber resume.  It is important to own your own name and your own background. 

Tip 3: Create your own Blog. There are many free Blog sites such as Blogspot and WordPress.  Take the time to let your potential college or employer see that you are enthusiastic about your interests and motivated to be all you can be.  If you are a professional or business owner, let your future and current clientele see that you are up-to-date and knowledgeable about your products and services.  [For example www.suescheff.blogspot.com and www.suescheff.wordpress.com]

Tip 4: Create Google Alerts for your name, business name and nicknames. This is free.  Find out when, how and why your name is being use online.  This vital for small businesses especially.  If there is a disgruntled client or customer, you want to know and hopefully can rectify the situation before it gets worse.

Here are three tips that have limited fees:

Tip 5: Buy your own URL with your name. For example mine is www.suescheff.com . This can be as little as $7.99 a year through GoDaddy. Build yourself a small website and share with people surfing and researching the web about yourself.

Tip 6:  Place your name.  Literally you can give the gift of PLACE YOUR NAME with a professional service for as little as $49.95 one time fee.  Let them position your name in the search engines, write a press release for you and more.  All for one low fee

Tip 7: Hire an online management service.  Although there are many to choose from today, my personal experience is with ReputationDefender.  If you know someone that is struggling with online slime, or simply needs a virtual presence or “online make-over” and doesn’t have the time or the computer savvy to create their cyber image, consider giving them a gift of relief with an online management service.  PS:  This is also a great gift to give yourself.  In my opinion and experience, Reputation Defender is the pioneer of online reputation management services and number one in my book.  (I am not a paid sponsor for them and I don’t receive any referral fees from them) I am simply a satisfied client. Costs vary according to your needs. Visit www.reputationdefender.com for their many services, as well as NameGrab, their latest addition.

Do you want more tips and practical guidance to help maintain your cyber profile?  Don’t forget to purchase Google Bomb, The Untold Story of the $11.3M Verdict That Changed the Way We Use the Internet (Health Communications, Inc. August 2009).  This book makes the perfect gift for everyone and anyone that uses the Internet, owns a business, has a reputation to protect, applying to schools, looking for jobs and more.

No one is immune to having their Internet image ruined.  So for this holiday season, give a present that gives you or the recipient a ‘presence’.

Remember it can take 20 years to build up a solid reputation and today it can take 20 minutes of a few vicious keystrokes and a click of the mouse, and those 20 years are history.

Also visit my Examiner articles on this subject – Part 1 and Part 2

Sue Scheff: Where is your name online?

PlaceYourNameIn today’s cyberspace world, the Internet is considered the information highway; however how do you determine what is Internet fact or fiction? Recently in Boca Raton, Florida a new service opened and it couldn’t be at a better time.

Today more and more people will Google you and the statistics are growing in regards to employers and college recruiters using Search Engines to research applicants.  It has become imperative that you own your name and maintain your Internet Resume.

•53% of Americans Google each other. – Pew Internet & American Life
•26% of college admissions officers use search engines to research candidates. University of Massachusetts Center for Market Research
•64% of teens say that most teens do things online that they wouldn’t want their parents to know about. -anti-drug.com
*77% of executive recruiters use search engines to research applicants.  -CareerBuilder

Here is a recent Press Release to learn more about placing your name online:

BOCA RATON, FL (November 3, 2009) – With an increasing number of Internet users Googling themselves and others on a regular basis, having an established and positive online search profile is a necessity for both individuals and companies.

Whether it’s a job seeker concerned about what potential employers see about them online or a business owner with a new product launch, having a strong Internet presence under one’s own name is an absolute necessity.

With this in mind, a Florida-based Internet marketing company has announced the launch of PlaceYourName.com, a new service that helps users manage and control what is seen about them when their names are searched online.

Using a combination of Internet public relations, Web site development and proprietary techniques, PlaceYourName.com offers its users the ability to place their name, news and biographical content online, creating a positive search engine profile in the process.

For less than $50, PlaceYourName.com helps empower users to take control of their online image, regardless of writing ability, computer knowledge or whether or not they have an existing Web site.

PlaceYourName.com offers registered users a personalized User Control Panel (UCP), where they input their information, news and content. After approving changes made by a PlaceYourName.com editor, the information is then placed online across a wide variety of content portals.

Once distribution takes place, users then have the ability to log back into their UCP and see the new information in the search engines in real-time.

The cost, ease-of-use and emphasis on personalized name promotion are what separate PlaceYourName.com from other traditional online visibility services.

PlaceYourName.com
is a wholly owned subsidiary of Search Me Group, LLC, an Internet marketing company dedicated to establishing online visibility for individuals, companies and organizations.

For more information, visit http://www.PlaceYourName.com  or call 1-561-404-4790. Take a few minutes to watch the video and see how PlaceYourName can help you!

If you doubt that maintaining your virtual image is important, be sure to read my recent book, Google Bomb! The Untold Story of How the $11.3M Verdict Changed the Way We Use the Internet.
Also on Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/x-19494-Broward-County-Parenting-Teens-Examiner~y2009m11d3-New-service-helps-Place-Your-Name-virtually-correct

 

 

Sue Scheff: Google Bomb book Continues to get High Praises and Reviews

Google_BombCover· Who should purchase Google Bomb?

Every person with a name and reputation which they wish to protect should purchase this book. You don’t have to be a technological titan to understand the examples provided. The take-away knowledge provides you a fighting chance to protect, and when necessary, reclaim your reputation. My adage re family online safety is: “Invest in your family’s online safety, commensurate with the value of your family.” This book’s modest price is asymmetrical to the increased value you’ll experience in your reputation safety quotient.

· Why you should purchase Google Bomb

Google Bomb is road-map clear, no missed exits, nor wrong turns, no questionable advice. It is an arrow in your quiver, so that you may defend yourself and/or prepare yourself should you have the unfortunate experience of receiving the vile ill-will of another via the social media environment in which we collectively exist – you do have a fighting chance.

· How Google Bomb touched me

Only infrequently does a book cause a reader to experience a personal visceral reaction; for me, it’s happened only once before. Google Bomb, the telling of Sue Scheff’s personal story in the recovery of her good name and reputation, is such a book, it moved me, and it will move you. Allow me to explain.

Those who know me well will have immediate understanding why a book which charts the Herculean efforts required to reclaim your good name, reputation and professional stature following the actions of a few to destroy, such resonated with me. You see, once you’ve traversed that road of false accusations, you never wish to replicate the journey again, and you’d wish it upon no one.

When it’s happening it’s surreal and unbelievable. Once the realization you aren’t dreaming hits home, you are either overwhelmed and capitulate, in effect self-declared road-kill or you take inventory of all your resources and deduce your good name and honorable reputation are the only remnants of your life worth protecting. You then take these remnants and use them to form the foundation of your reclamation efforts. Even if your first steps may feel a bit like Don Quixote tilting at windmills, persevere, what journey ever started off with every experience preordained?

I appreciated the description of the pivotal moment when Sue described the last straw, the straw which caused her to stand up and say, “Enough already.” I had complete visualization of her reaction when the miscreants who had been attacking her persona and her company, began attacking her children. I had no doubt her “mother bear” instinct to fight and protect her offspring was fully awake and it was game-on!

Unfortunately, bad things do happen to good people. You strive, perhaps seemingly altruistically to bring goodness to this world and awaken one day to find yourself surrounded by vile and unconscionable accusations. Your mindset describes the event as “stupefying,” you are now seemingly being punished for your good works. Google Bomb describes such an experience, Sue’s experience.

· What to do and how to do it

John Dozier’s insightful discussion of events, throughout the book, is clear and concise – the reader can easily understand the, “why” behind each of Sue’s actions. I found myself rereading and noting the legal and technical strategy employed as Sue’s reputation was reclaimed. I was nodding my head with great satisfaction as those wishing ill will upon Sue and her family were identified, held accountable and brought before the courts where they were ultimately held responsible and duly punished.

· Applicability for businesses and intellectual property

John’s extrapolation of his methodologies to the realm of a small, medium, or large company’s reputation and intellectual property protection is spot-on. My own book “Secrets Stolen, Fortunes Lost” was stolen within 60 days of publication from my publisher, and then shared via peer-to-peer networks (see my article Secrets Stolen, No Just the Intellectual Property which describes the experience). Plainly spoken, if you have intellectual property, “Have a strategy!” to protect it.

· Reputation Defense

Highlighting the good works of Michael Fertik’s Reputation Defender, was personally appreciated, as it reoriented my compass with respect to his firm – I’ll be re-engaging the company to learn more about their capabilities. My first encounter with Reputation Defender can only be described as “going sideways” and I have no doubt it was an anomalous event – I look forward to learning more from Michael or his staff, as Sue’s experiences described in Google Bomb, clearly show them to be effective.

· Google Bomb’s call to action

I agree with and wish to associate myself with the call-to-action contained in the book. We are all responsible for keeping our shared online community safe. When self-policing and self-control fail, then we do require meaningful laws availed to law enforcement and prosecutors. Laws having backbone and are easily understood and are flexible enough to anticipate evolution of technology are required. In essence our current situation is analogous to having a population center of millions without a “time-out” corner.

In my opinion, we need alignment of state and federal statutes which will hold accountable those engaging in cyber stalking, invasion of our privacy, personal impersonation and character defamation. In the United States, well meaning legislators are acting individually and from the optic of their constituent states – we need federal action. Furthermore, restraining orders need to have appropriate meat attached to their bones, with a need to integrate 21st century technologies – in the physical world 100 feet is measurable, in the virtual world, geographic borders are obscured – lets bring technological audit trails, access controlled environments and filtering into play.

It is no small task to fill the international voids which provide haven for both domestic and international criminal or malevolent individuals to operate with impunity, but instead of describing the difficulty, let’s get started. I’m all in! If we don’t all step up and contribute, then Sue’s story will be the first of many more to come.

· My personal thank you

In closing, I’d like Sue to know I’ve great personal empathy for the angst which she and her family experienced and I commend her for her display of personal courage and fortitude, from her decision to stand up and not take it any more, all the way through the sharing of her story so that others may learn from her experiences. For John, your work speaks for itself, nicely done sir.

Thank you Sue also for your good works both individually and through your Parents Universal Resource Experts (PURE); it is clear you are one of the good people, and many families no doubt are grateful beyond their ability to articulate for the assistance you provided. Thank you John for your clear explanations of the legal strategy and steps one can take to protect oneself, you’ve empowered many.

By:
Christopher Burgess
Christopher is the senior security advisor within a Fortune 100 company. He is also the co-author of Secrets Stolen, Fortunes Lost, Preventing Intellectual Property Theft and Economic Espionage in the 21st Century
http://www.secretsstolen.com/
Twitter: @burgessct
This reviewer paid for this book