Posts tagged "Online/Social Media Privacy"
Before you read this article, stop and picture yourself as a 16 year old. Now that you’ve recovered from the trauma of that, think about this question: what thoughts consumed your time – your favorite band, your first car, your first love, your first job, your first password? Certainly not the latter, and you most likely weren’t thinking about online privacy issues.
It’s no surprise then that today’s teens don’t think about them much either, although they do more than most of us ever had to. The Pew Research Center recently conducted a survey entitled Teens, Social Media, and Privacy and found a variety of interesting statistics.
Teens share more about themselves on social media sites than they did according to the previous survey from 2006. A few of the more significant ones:
- 91% post a photo of themselves (up from 79%)
- 71% post their school name (up from 49%)
One billion people worldwide use Facebook to share the details of their lives with their friends and may be unaware their Facebook Privacy could be compromised. Trouble is, they also might be unintentionally divulging matters they consider private to co-workers, clients and employers. Worse yet, they may be sharing their privacy with marketing companies and even scammers, competitors and identity thieves.
Here are six ways Facebook could be compromising your private information and how to protect yourself:
1. The new Timeline format brings old lapses in judgment back to light. Timeline, introduced in late 2011, makes it easy for people to search back through your old Facebook posts, something that was very difficult to do in the past. That could expose private matters and embarrassing photos that you’ve long since forgotten posting.
This post is a summary of an excellent article appearing in USA Today By Byron Acohido, Scott Martin and Jon Swartz.
It’s a heated competition to tap what many experts predict will be the next big Internet gold rush — online advertising — Google and Facebook laid down very big bets, during a week when European regulators are hashing out strict new rules that could prevent much of what the tech giants seek to do.
Google signaled its intent to begin correlating data about its users’ activities across all of its most popular services and across multiple devices. The goal: to deliver those richer behavior profiles to advertisers.
Likewise, Facebook announced it will soon make Timeline the new, more glitzy user interface for its service, mandatory. Timeline is designed to chronologically assemble, automatically display and make globally accessible the preferences, acquaintances and activities for most of Facebook’s 800 million members.
The post appears like it’s coming from a known friend. It’s enticing (“check out what our old high school friend does for a living now!”), feeds on your curiosity and good nature, begs you to click. A quick peek at the video, a chance to win a FREE iPad or to download a coupon, and presto, you’ve just infected your computer with malware (all the bad stuff that sends your private information to criminals and marketers). Sound like the spam email of days gone by? You’re right – spam has officially moved into the world of social media, and it’s like winning the lottery for cyber thugs.
What is Social Spam?
Nothing more than junk posts on your social media sites luring you to click on links that download malicious software onto your computer or mobile device.
Why You Should Share Facebook Privacy Settings with Friends
A true friend does more than just post updates about their conquests on your wall. They share information with you that makes your life better, even if it isn’t exactly what you want to hear. And you do the same for them. But are your friends unwittingly sharing too much information about you with others (strangers, advertisers, app developers, scammers)? Probably. For example, if they (or you) haven’t customized your privacy settings lately, you are giving Facebook permission to:
- Publish your name, photo, birth date, hometown and friend list to everyone?
- Indirectly share your restricted data with outsiders through your friends?
- Let your friends check you in to embarrassing locations where you aren’t?
- Post your Likes as advertisements on friends’ walls using your name?
- Authorize Google to index, access and share your information on the web?
A report was recently published claiming that nearly 100,000 Facebook apps have been leaking access codes belonging to millions of users’ profiles. Symantec released the report and said that an app security flaw may have given apps and other third parties access to users’ profiles. Facebook maintains that they have no evidence of this occurring.
In their report, Symantec wrote:
We estimate that as of April 2011, close to 100,000 applications were enabling this leakage. We estimate that over the years, hundreds of thousands of applications may have inadvertently leaked millions of access tokens to third parties.
These “access tokens” help apps interact with your profile.They are most often used to post updates from the application to your wall. When you add the applications to your profile you, as the Facebook user, is giving the apps access to your information by accepting their conditions. According to the investigation, these tokens were included in URLs sent to the application host and were then sent to advertisers and analytics platforms. If the recipient recognized the codes (meaning they have to be qualified to read and write HTML code), they could gain access to the user’s wall’s and profile.
How should my business balance the risks of social media with the rewards of this increasingly dominant and highly profitable marketing medium? That’s the very insightful question that a CEO asked me during a presentation I gave on information leadership for a Vistage CEO conference.
Think of your move into social media (Facebook/Fan/Business Pages, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, etc.) like you would approach the task of helping your fifteen-year-old daughter prepare to drive on her own. You love her more than anything on earth and would do anything for her (just like you will go to great lengths grow your business), but that doesn’t mean you just hand her the keys. Trying to forbid or ignore the movement into social marketing is like telling your teen that they can’t get their license. It isn’t going to happen, so you might consider putting down the denial and controlling those pieces of change that are within your power. The task is to maximize the positives of her newly bestowed freedom while minimizing any negatives; the same is true in social media.
A close friend of mine just had his Facebook account taken over and used for pretty nasty things, so… this is just a quick reminder to change your Facebook password frequently for added security. If you have been a member for years, like most people, and have not ever changed your password, I recommend you do so right now (don’t wait, you’ll never do it later).
On a site like Facebook that houses so much of your personal reputation and information, it is good to keep passwords new and difficult to hack. We see people’s Facebook profiles get hacked every day from clicking on malware and phishing schemes – and once they have your Facebook password, they probably have the same password you use on other accounts. Changing your password frequently, as simple as it sounds, is an easy way to avoid some of the privacy problems posed by Facebook. Once you are logged in, visit your Account Settings Page. On the first page next to Password click change.