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Security Risks in Social Media

April 5, 2011

Recently I ran across a rather humorous video on The Onion.  Now while this video is obviously fictitious it does make some really interesting points.  People willingly put so much personal information on the sites like Facebook that it makes it easy to find out all sorts of things about them.  Where they live, family members, email addresses, phone numbers, employers, where they went to school, and birthdate.  All that and we haven’t even looked at any post and updates the user makes. It is no wonder identity theft is becoming such a problem today. 

Also, think about this; I have several Facebook friends that regularly tell people when they are going to be out of town.  While this may seem harmless enough on the surface someone with a nefarious nature could use this information to their detriment.  Instead of staking out homes looking for patterns or waiting for people to leave home all a burglar needs to do is monitor Facebook.

Now, I am not saying to stop using Facebook or other social media outlets.  After all I am on Facebook.  But I would caution you to be mindful of what information you put out there.  Back in November I wrote an article about the Security Risks for Free Wireless Networks and in that article I linked to an Online services security report card.  As you can see from the image below:Online services security report card
Most social media sites don’t score to well.  The truth is that it is relatively easy for hackers to gain access to your profile.  I am sure we all know someone who has had a social media account hacked at one point or another.  The point of all this is to make you aware of the risks.  Knowing the risk is the first step in protecting yourself.  Below are a few helpful tips you can use to help protect your data:

  1. Keep you virus database up to date
  2. Be mindful of the people accept friend requests from (make sure you really know them)
  3. Make sure you are using a firewall
  4. And perhaps most importantly be mindful of what information you are posting

Remember that there will always be risks but we can minimize them with just a little knowledge and effort.


13 Comments leave one →
  1. Anonymous permalink
    April 5, 2011 10:36 pm

    Great post!

  2. Jack permalink
    April 6, 2011 10:34 pm

    Great Article.

  3. Jack permalink
    April 6, 2011 10:35 pm

    thanks for posting

  4. April 8, 2011 11:55 am

    Have you thought about adding some relevant links to the article? I think it might enhance viewers’ understanding.

  5. April 12, 2011 10:34 pm

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  6. April 13, 2011 12:31 pm

    I was wondering if you ever considered changing the layout of your blog? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having one or two images. Maybe you could space it out better?

  7. April 14, 2011 9:15 am

    This weblog seems to recieve a good ammount of visitors. How do you get traffic to it? It gives a nice individual twist on things. I guess having something authentic or substantial to talk about is the most important thing.

    • April 14, 2011 5:10 pm

      You are correct. Content is the most important thing. But we also syndicate ourselves though our website, Facebook, and twitter accounts.

  8. September 16, 2011 8:58 pm

    If you’d like to conversate more on social media, and mobile device privacy and security, stop by, a new blog focusing on how to protect yourself and your privacy while using the modern web.

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