Facebook + Hackers – Privacy = You Lose

Friday, June 04, 2010

Robert Siciliano

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I’m as sick of writing about it as you are sick of reading about it. But because Facebook has become a societal juggernaut: a massive inexorable force that seems to crush everything in its way, we need to discuss it because it’s messing with lots of functions of society.

We should all now know that whatever you post on Facebook is not private. You may think it is, but it isn’t. Even though you may have gone through all kinds of privacy settings and locked down your profile, Facebook has changed them up internally so many times that they may have defaulted to something far less private then what you previously set.

Furthermore, no matter how private you have set them to, if you friend someone who you don’t know (like that human resource officer), they see what’s “private” and anyone on the “inside” can easily replicate anything you post to the world.

The activist groups waging what amounts to an undeclared war against the social-networking site for the last year, complete with no fewer than three letters to federal regulators claiming Facebook’s actions are illegal said that they’re hardly ready to declare a truce.

Attacks targeting Facebook users will continue, and they could easily become even more dangerous. Computerworld reports “There are limitations to what Facebook can do to stop this,” said Patrik Runald, a U.K.-based researcher for Websense Security Labs. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see another attack this weekend. Clearly, they work.”

Websense has identified more than 100 variations of the same Facebook attack app used in the two attacks, all identical except for the API keys that Facebook requires.

What does this mean to you?

For crying out loud stop telling the world you hate your boss, neighbor, students’ teachers, or spouse and you’d like to boil a bunny on the stove to teach them a lesson. I guarantee even if you are kidding, someone won’t like it. What you say/do/post, lasts forever.

Stop playing the stupid 3rd party games. When you answer “25 questions about whatever” that data goes straight into the hands of some entity that you would never have volunteered it to.

Make sure you PC is secured. Keep your operating system up to date with security patches and anti-virus and don’t download anything from any email you receive or click links in the body of any email. Once you start messing with these files you become a Petri dish spreading a virus.

Robert Siciliano personal security expert to Home Security Source discussing Facebook scams on CNN.

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Ray Tan Yeah, with the popularity of social sites, more and more peopled involved in it without enough awareness of privacy protection.
Although this is not a brand new issue, the number of victims are increasing continuously.
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