In early June, Facebook faced an attempt for a hacker to break into the social networking site. As of this writing, the authorities in the United States and United Kingdom are looking into the matter.
According to Facebook there was no compromise of its system and no user data was stolen. Facebook is a major target as they have a very large user base of over 500 million people, people post personal information and many users trust what they receive while in Facebook.
The first item, Facebook being so large is just a fact of life. One has to hope that Facebook starts to take very seriously the trust which people give them.
The second item, posting personal information is something each user has some control over. Facebook does incorporate many security options to restrict access to personal data; most people however don’t enable them. The reason I said each user has some control over data is because a family member or friend can write about them or post pictures of them on Facebook.
The third issue, people trusting friends within Facebook, requires a change in behavioral habits. You may do a very good job of securing the information you have posted to Facebook, but what happens if you add an app you thought was suggested to you by a friend or click on an link which you also believe they sent? If their account is compromised, by automatically trusting them, you too could be compromised and could infect your friends.
Having personal information such as birth dates, address or phone number may not be a good idea. Home addresses and phone number can always be sent to people once you verify who they are.
This article was written by The Boss of HITman Services, a computer and IT company, based in Clifton Park and serving the Albany, Troy, Schenectady and Saratoga Counties of New York.