I cringe when I see
friend or family members who have done them. Facebook quizzes may seem so innocent,
but they are too often a gateway for hackers to get your information. For the
sake of this blog I decided to try and see what permissions they are really
asking for. I found many of these quizzes require you to login with Facebook to
take the quiz. Which gives the requesters – friend or foe - complete access to
your public profile, email, friends list and more.
Some quizzes want your
of service, you are entering a world of pain, as your number can be shared and
resold, putting you at heightened risk for spam texts, and possibly additional
Recently, a pair of
Ukrainian hackers used online quizzes and surveys to gain access to private
Facebook user data. They used titles
like "What does your eye color say about you?" to target users with
"unauthorized" advertisements. In a lawsuit filed in Northern California,
Facebook alleged that hackers improperly used a Facebook feature to take
control of users' internet browsers.
The lawsuit went on to
say hackers thereby gained access to private information about Facebook users
and their private friends' lists. The Better Business Bureau urges people to be
aware of how to guard their information and offers these tips to help protect
your social media accounts:
skeptical. Before you take a quiz, figure out who created it. Is it a brand
Friend People You Don’t Know. Be extra cautious of what you click on from
“friends” you don’t recognize. Messages that are brief or come from people you
don’t expect to hear from might be scams that include links to malicious sites.
Cautious With Your Personal Information. Never give out personal
information, such as your full name, telephone number, address, etc. to a
person or business you don’t know or trust.
Your Password. Use different passwords for each social media/email account
and avoid including your name or common words. Never share your password with
anyone; if you must share it - change it immediately after.
- Use Extra
Security Features. Turn on two-factor authentication or set up a security
- Log Out
of Facebook. When using a shared computer, log out after each session.
Your Privacy Settings. Familiarize yourself with your privacy settings and
revisit them frequently. As Facebook adds new features, it makes decisions
about settings which you may or may not like.
You can find more about BBB and the
cyber security resources available to both businesses and consumers at
BBB.org/cybersecurity. To report a scam, go to BBB Scam Tracker
(BBB.org/scamtracker). To protect yourself from all kinds of scams, visit the
BBB Scam Tips page (BBB.org/scamtips).