Facebook is everywhere it’s on your computer and even your phone, you can’t avoid it. It has become one of our primary methods of communication, we send reminds and invitations, we even post photos and play games with our friends. But did you know that those games and photos could lead to trouble?
Unfortunately Facebook is filled with spammers and scammers, all looking to make a quick buck and they will use any method they can. Every time you share something or click on a game you are giving another program access to your details and you are giving them potential access to your friends.
Your friends are doing the same thing to you. The outside programs are called third party applications, no doubt you have seen the popup that asks for permission, but have you actually read it? With many of them you are giving the program access to your status and news feed, many of them even ask permission to post for you.
Do you really want to lose control of your status updates? Imagine that a post appears on your timeline saying how much you enjoyed program XYZ so a friend decides to try the program out. Next thing they know program XYZ is posting how much they enjoyed the program so some of their friends try it. Soon you have 20 new people on a program that no one really knows what it is. Program XYZ now has access to the timelines, likes and dislikes of all 20 people. If they have no malicious plans they will just sell the data to another company that will streamline commercials and spam towards the victims. But that program could just as easily start trolling for pictures to post elsewhere, that bikini picture from your Florida Vacation could end up on a porn site.
Take This Lollipop is an almost terrifying tale of what can be accessed by a third party when they gain access to your account. Check it out and then think again about how you have configured your Facebook account. You can protect yourself by adjusting your Facebook security and periodically checking to ensure nothing has changed.
- Go to Privacy Settings in Facebook. Under each heading Who can see my stuff and Who can look me up ensure that the setting is Friends.
- Go to Timeline and Tagging Settings to adjust what can be added and seen on your timeline as well as how you will deal with tagging.
- Under Apps there is a category called Apps others use. This is how other applications gain access to your information, uncheck anything that isn’t relevant to something you may need.
- If you really want to access another application then stop before you click all the way through and look at the bottom left of the popup window, there should be something asking you who will view this application. Change it to be yourself only, then if the program is a danger none of your friends will see it before you have a change to remove or block it.
- With the frequent updates on Facebook, you never know what has changed so it’s always a good idea to go through all of your settings on a regular basis.