If you have been a Reddit user for some time, then here are some security and privacy issues that you should know, and if the need is, to delete your account if that’s what you think is the best decision.
Controversy has been around Reddit for quite some time now. Looking back to 2016, when Trump was elected. The CEO of Reddit, Steve Huffman, found out a subreddit in favor of trump. The subreddit was named r/The_Donald, and the popular comments over there were mainly about Huffman himself. This was because of how the Hilary Clinton conspiracy subreddit was shut down.
The security problem which was not known to Redditors was that the CEO could dive in the codes of the site and alter it in such a way that if someone were criticizing him, he would replace the critic’s username with his own. This would effectively turn the insult back on the critics. When Redditors found out about this, they were upset about how this security flaw has led to their data being manipulated.
This power no longer resides in the hands of Huffman, but it does show how much power the tech executives at Reddit hold, and the privacy risks that come with it.
This wasn’t the only vulnerability with Reddit that was exposed. In the past few years, there have been vulnerabilities that included a nude photo hack, content moderators rebelling, and how in 2016, the government asked for the user’s data to be handed over to them.
And another incident happened just two years earlier, where Reddit started sharing data with third parties, which was gained by tracking their users.
Reddit, like most sites, has tracking enabled for ads and personalization. Yes, there is an option to opt-out of it manually, but if users have no idea of this tracking enabled by default, they won’t opt-out of it.
Why Delete The Reddit Account
Here are some of the reasons why you might want to consider deleting your Reddit account.
Your Reddit account has been hacked, and then insults have been posted on your page.
Something offensive or inappropriate content which you would like avoiding.
Just deciding to let go of Reddit because you don’t use it anymore.
Since Reddit has been surrounded by controversy over the years, it makes sense that someone might want to delete their account. It has been known how the comments made on the site can be edited. Also, how usernames have been swapped in the past, all of this was done without the Redditor knowing.
Deactivating the Account or Deleting
Unlike other social networks, Reddit has no option to disable your account temporarily. Once you decide that your account needs to go, it can’t come back. Everything will be gone forever, which includes things such as your favorite links. However, your comments will still be there visible to all, but the username will appear as [deleted].
If for some reason, you decided to return to Reddit, the username you used to sign-up before will no longer be available for you or anyone else. And unlike other social media sites, you can’t get the data Reddit keeps through an automated process. Instead, you will have to personally contact the company to be able to download the data of yours they hold with them.
Simple Way to Delete Reddit Account
If you have made up your mind, considering all the things said above, and want to delete your account permanently, then here’s how to do it.
- Log in to your account on Reddit.
- Find the user icon, and then from the drop-down menu, select ‘User Settings.’
- Scroll down the page until you find ‘Deactivate Account.’
- You will be required to enter once again your login details and an optional box, which asks why you need to get rid of your account. You will also have to check the box that reads that accounts, once deleted, cannot be recovered.
- Move forward and click on the ‘Deactivate’ button.
- You will once again be asked if you are sure since your account cannot be recovered. Click ‘Deactivate’
- Your account on Reddit is now no more.
How to Keep Your Data Private and Protected
Reddit is not the only platform that has been surrounded by security and privacy concerns. As in 2019, there was a scandal of Cambridge Analytica that was targeted at Facebook. According to the scandal, Facebook shared data of about 87 million users in inappropriate ways.
And since your social media accounts store a lot about you, much can be learned through the leaked data. There also have been many burglaries on houses that the criminals knew to be empty through social media holiday announcements.
Many social media users reveal their location of posting through geotags without knowing the risks. This could be a severe privacy problem since you can give away the address of your place. Additionally, if your birthdate is mentioned on your social media account, fraudsters can use it for identity fraud. The more information social media sites store about you, the greater are the risks to your privacy.
However, social media is not all that bad. It has its own set of benefits. The main being connected to friends and family, no matter how far they are from you on the globe. The other significant service of social media is business. So if you can’t let go of social media because of these benefits, then here are a few things you can do to keep yourself safe.
- Whenever you join a social media network, try to read their privacy policies and how your information will be used. See if your data will be shared with third parties.
- Keep an eye on your privacy settings and limit them to those closest to you. This way, important information which can be used to pinpoint you, won’t go to strangers,
- And be sure not to let social media access or post your location.