Social media profiles could get you in trouble

Too often, social networking platforms have become go-to sources of personal information for hackers and cyber thieves.

When sharing information, stories and thoughts on social media websites like Facebook and Twitter, it may seem like the only ones paying attention to your activities are friends and family. The truth though, according to cyber security experts, is that what happens on social media does not stay there.

Too often, social networking platforms have become go-to sources for hackers and cyber thieves. According to tech2, hacker tactics to get unsuspecting people to click on malware-infested emails are now being used via bad links posted on sites on Facebook. One such example highlighted in the article was about how cyber thieves used a video featuring a prominent actor to redirect users to a malicious page embedded with financial malware.

Part of the issue stems from users having a false sense of privacy while on social media sites. Too often, users share more information than they should with friends, or even strangers, which can lead to several unsavory consequences. Even seemingly benign information can lead to full-scale identity theft, according to tech2. For example, many people use information like a spouse’s birthday or a mother’s maiden name as their password. Much of this information is freely available on a profile page, and exposing these facts can serve as an open invitation to hackers. By taking a quick glance at your social media account, a hacker may be able to guess your password using the personal information provided as a guide.

One of the best ways for someone to protect themselves though, is through stringent maintenance of social media login information. PTI News said that the email address used in a social media account should not be the same one used to log into online banking, and the password selected needs also to be unique and difficult to guess.

No matter what website is being used, PTI said people and businesses should always express caution as no site is guaranteed to have quality layered security measures in place.

What do you think is the most important cyber security factor to keep in mind when using social media websites? To what extent do you rely on application control software to protect yourself while online?

Matt Williams

A self-proclaimed ‘tech geek’, Matt has worked in technology for a decade and divides his time between blogging and working in IT. A huge New York Giants fan, when not watching football Matt gets his game on playing Call of Duty with his friends and other tech bloggers.