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AVG Digital Diaries 6 Infographic (Graphic: Business Wire)

Nearly one quarter of 18-25 year olds are ‘Facebook friends’ with their boss, AVG Technologies’ latest Digital Diaries study reveals. The study also found that the majority of respondents admitted they had never audited their online profile or cleaned-up potentially career damaging content. Digital Baggage, the sixth instalment of AVG’s Digital Diaries study, features responses from 4,400 18-25 year olds in 11 countries to AVG’s questions as to how they manage their social network profiles.

AVG’s research also finds that 60 percent of 18-25 year olds who are ‘Facebook friends’ with their colleagues do not restrict the content co-workers are able to access. Yet, over half did wish they could remove inappropriate photos of themselves online.

The survey highlights how this age group is likely to share personal content in an open forum that includes work colleagues, which could have long-term impact on their future career prospects. Specifically, 13 percent of respondents globally did admit to posting abusive content online about their boss or company after a bad day at work.

Italy’s young employees were the most likely to vent their anger (18 percent), compared to their French and New Zealand equivalents (10 percent), who were least likely to express their emotions digitally.

Tony Anscombe, AVG’s Senior Security Evangelist, said: “AVG’s latest research clearly shows young people today have a comfort with using online social networks that is leading to blurring between their professional and private lives. It seems obvious that posting abusive content about a boss or workplace is not very sensible, but it’s important to understand that not only could it damage a person’s existing career, it could also negatively impact on future opportunities too. Our research findings indicate that today’s 18- 25 year old ‘digital natives’ need to be more aware of their online brand as something employers and recruiters are increasingly investigating.”

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