10 commandments of Facebook
Wonder how much of personal information is fine on Facebook? Well, an expert tells you the dos and don'ts of being a part of the social networking giant. Read on for your privacy.india Updated: Nov 09, 2010 18:26 IST
Wonder how much of personal information is fine on Facebook? Well, an expert tells you the dos and don'ts of being a part of the social networking giant.
Dave Whitelegg said that although Facebook is a fun way to keep in touch with friends and family, it can also be dangerous.
"Posting certain photos or information on the site puts you at risk of being fired, a victim of crime, or even worse. There are computer programmes called 'data mining' that sweep Facebook to collect dates of birth, phone numbers, addresses etc. That's gold dust to criminals," the Sun quoted Whitelegg, an IT security expert, as saying.
Date and place of birth - This places you at massive risk of identity theft. They are the most commonly used security questions on password resetting sites.
Mother's maiden name - A lot of sites use your mother's maiden name to authenticate who you are. They also commonly use the school you went to as a security question.
Address - It again puts you at risk from identity fraud, but also from burglars and stalkers.
Holidays - If you post an update on Facebook saying: "Can't wait till next Wednesday - two weeks in Miami yeh!" you are basically saying: "Come and rob me."
Short trips from home - Again, this can put you at risk of burglary and stalking.
Inappropriate photos - Don't post racy, illicit, offensive or incriminating photos. Bosses and prospective employers are increasingly looking at Facebook pages.
Confessionals - These can also get you fired or haunt you for the rest of your life. Posting you are skiving work, who you are sleeping with, or doing something shameful is just dumb.
Phone number - Unless you want to be bombarded with unsolicited phone calls from people trying to sell you something - don't.
Children's names - These can be used by identity fraudsters or, more sinisterly, by paedophiles. It is much easier to steal a child''s identity. An adult will eventually discover something is wrong by, for example, their credit rating being affected. Children won''t.
Don't post a full public profile - It won't just exist on Facebook, it will go on any internet search such as Google. Only give the bare bones such as a name. Keep everything else private.