Five Hidden Dangers of Facebook
Facebook claims it has 400 million users. But are they well-protected from prying eyes, scammers and unwanted marketers?
Not according to Joan Goodchild, senior editor of CSO (Chief Security Officer) Online.
She says your privacy may be at far greater risk of being violated than you know when you log onto Facebook, due to security gaffes or marketing efforts by the company.
Facebook came under fire, when 15 privacy and consumer protection organizations filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, charging that the site, among other things, manipulates privacy settings to make users' personal information available for commercial use. Also, some Facebook users found their private chats accessible to everyone on their contact list - a major security breach that's left a lot of people wondering just how secure the site is.
In two words, asserts Goodchild - not very.
On "The Early Show on Saturday Morning," she spotlighted five dangers she says Facebook users expose themselves to, probably without aware of it:
• Your information is being shared with third parties
• Privacy settings revert to a less safe default mode after each redesign
• Facebook ads may contain malware
• Your real friends unknowingly make you vulnerable
• Scammers are creating fake profiles
Is Facebook a secure platform to communicate with your friends?
Here's the thing; Facebook is one of the most popular sites in the world. … Security holes are being found on a regular basis. … It is not as inherently secure as people think it is when they log on every day.
Certainly, it is hard to compare this to others; we have never had this phenomenon before in the way people are communicating with each other - only e-mail comes close.
The potential for crime is real. Approximately $1.5 billion was lost in 2012 to online credit and debit card fraud in the US. In 2016, a study by Juniper Research estimated that the costs of cybercrime could be as high as 2.1 trillion by 2019. If you're not careful using Facebook, you are looking at the potential for identity theft, or possibly even something like assault if you share information with a dangerous person you think is actually a "friend." One British police agency recently reported the number of crimes they've responded to in the last year involving Facebook climbed 346 percent. These are real threats.
Lately, it seems a week doesn't go by without some new news about a Facebook-related security problem.
A publication called "TechCrunch" discovered a security hole that made it possible for users to read their friends' private chats. Facebook has since patched it, but who knows how long that flaw existed? Some speculate it may have been that way for years.
Researchers at VeriSign's iDefense group discovered a hacker was selling Facebook user names and passwords in an underground hacker forum. It was estimated he had about 1.5 million accounts - and was selling them for between $25 and $45.
And the site is constantly under attack from hackers trying to spam these 400 million users, or harvest their data, or run other scams. Certainly, there is a lot of criticism in the security community of Facebook's handling of security. Perhaps the most frustrating thing is that the company rarely responds to inquiries.
Do people really have privacy on Facebook?
No. There are all kinds of ways third parties can access information about you. For instance, you may not realize that, when you are playing the popular games on Facebook, such as Farmville, or take those popular quizzes, every time you do that, you authorize an application to be downloaded to your profile that you may not realize gives information to third parties.
A study last year concluded that 40 percent of all Facebook profiles are fake. They have been set up by bots or impostors. If you have 500 friends, it is likely there is a percentage of people you don't really know and you are sharing a lot of information with them, such as when you are on vacation, your children's pictures, their names. Is this information you really want to put out there to people you don't even know?
Should We Trust Police Officers?
Are police officers allowed to lie to you? Yes the Supreme Court has ruled that police officers can lie to the American people. Police officers are trained at lying, twisting words and being manipulative. Police officers and other law enforcement agents are very skilled at getting information from people. So don’t try to “out smart” a police officer and don’t try being a “smooth talker” because you will lose! If you can keep your mouth shut, you just might come out ahead more than you expected. Related article: 46,000+ American citizens are currently serving time for crimes that they did not commit
Facebook Sex Sting (ongoing)
A 25-year-old was arrested for sexual corruption of a minor and attempted rape charges after he contacted undercover police officers on a social media site.
Tyler Matthew Shrum, 25, was talking online with undercover officers from Portland’s Sex Trafficking Unit.
He didn’t actually have any contact with a minor, police said. They are withholding the website to keep the operation undercover.
Sexual Assault Resource Center hotline 1-800-640-5311; or,
the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 1-800-843-5678 or
via the Cyber Tipline: http://www.missingkids.org/CyberTipline
I'm starting my own social networking site and calling it Stay-Outta-My-Face.
Facebook rape suspect, Wayne Smith, charged in 3rd rape
By Camille Mann CBS News
Wayne Smith, the 25-year-old barber who is charged with raping two women he met on Facebook, allegedly attacked a third woman just hours before one of the other rapes.
Smith met the woman on Facebook and the two had consensual sex a day before he raped her.
Smith came back to the woman's apartment after they had consensual sex, two nights before, but both had agreed they'd be better off as friends, Assistant State's Attorney Morgan Creepel told the station.
Smith still spent the evening at her apartment but they argued all through the night and while the victim was getting ready for work, he pulled her hair and told her nobody would hear if he used his gun. After he raped her he laughed, Creppel said to the station.
Later that afternoon, Smith sexually assaulted another woman he met through Facebook who he had just met in-person and had lunch with, the prosecutors told WBBM.
Police were able to link Smith to the third case after his DNA matched evidence recovered from her rape kit, Creppel told the station.
Facebook Stalkers Beware: Clear Your Searches!
By Katy Widrick
CLEARING YOUR ACTIVITY LOG
1. Go to your profile page and look for the “Activity Log” button near the right side of the screen. Click it.
2. You’ll see a dashboard for every click, search and upload you’ve ever made (yikes). Along the left sidebar, look for the “search” option — you’ll probably have to click the “more” button that is below the section that starts with “photos.”
3. Voila! Every search you’ve made. You can delete one by one or clear all, which is what I did.
4. Do this every once in a while, because when you clear it, it only gets rid of past items and doesn’t block the activity log from recording new searches.
Rape And Facebook
By Richard Lyon DailyKos
A New Jersey judge has ordered a teenager who accused a man of rape to turn over access to her Facebook page.
Mercer County superior court judge Robert Billmeier this week agreed to a request from David Stevens-Parker’s defence attorney, and the judge said he will privately review two weeks of Facebook postings for any comments related to the alleged rape before deciding whether any can be used in court.
The defence attorney, Andrew Ferencevych, said he wants to see if there are any hints that the sex was consensual. Stevens-Parker, 22, was charged with providing the then-16-year-old Princeton girl with alcohol before sexually assaulting her in April 2013.
Content from social media is routinely used in court, but the New Jersey case is different because it involves a judge ordering an alleged victim to turn over information, said Wendy Patrick, a prosecutor and former chairwoman of the California state bar ethics committee.
“It’s used all the time and the reason is because the internet has become a confessional,” Patrick said. “It’s a place where everyone is an open book.”
Patrick noted that authenticating content found on social media is often the most difficult part of trying to use it as evidence.
"The defense attorney, Andrew Ferencevych, said he wants to see if there are any hints that the sex was consensual. Stevens-Parker, 22, was charged with providing the then-16-year-old Princeton girl with alcohol before sexually assaulting her in April 2013."
What Is the Age of Consent for Sex in New Jersey?
In New Jersey, the age of consent for sexual conduct is 16 years old. This applies to both heterosexual and homosexual conduct. As a general matter, this means that a person who is 16 years old can generally consent to have sex with any adult, regardless of age.
Like most other states, New Jersey’s laws allow for consensual sex between minors below the age of consent, if they are close to the same age.
In New Jersey, a person aged 13 or older can generally consent to have sex with anyone who is no more than 4 years older. Nobody under the age of 13 can legally consent to sex, regardless of the age of their partner.
Penalties for Under-Age Sex in New Jersey
The penalties for violating New Jersey’s age of consent are fairly stiff, but in line with the majority of other states. The crime of aggravated sexual assault, which is sex with a person under the age of 13, carries a penalty of 10 to 20 years in prison.
From Legal Match (a law firm search thingy)
How to Protect Your Facebook Account from Hackers
1. Create a strong password. Avoid including your name, birthdate, pets, or common words in your password: make it difficult to guess.
A strong password will be at least 8 characters in length. A strong password should contain at least one of each of the following characters: lower-case letters, upper-case letters, numbers, and special characters.
2. Do not use your Facebook password anywhere else. Ensure that you create a different password for every web service/website you use.
3. Use a password manager. As you create more strong and unique passwords, it will likely be difficult to remember them all. There are many good password managers available that will encrypt and safely store your passwords.
You might even have a password manager built into your operating system — for example, Mac users have the keychain password manager available to them for free.
4. Change your password once every six months. This goes for all of your passwords — not just your Facebook one.
5. Do not share your Facebook password with anyone. In fact, don’t share any of your passwords with anyone!
6. Avoid using the “remember password” feature on web browsers. This is particularly important if you are not using your own computer.
7. Only type your password into trusted computers. If you are using a computer that you don’t know or trust, avoid doing anything that requires you to enter your password. Hackers commonly use keystroke loggers on computer systems that record everything you type, including passwords.
8. When logging into your Facebook account. On the Facebook home page, enter your email address and password to log into your Facebook account. Ensure that you log into Facebook (and other sites) at the correct address: www.facebook.com.
Open your Facebook settings. Once you’re logged into your Facebook account, click on the downward-pointing triangle in the top right corner of your page (along the blue bar). This will open a drop-down menu. Just above “Log out” you’ll see “Settings.” Click on “Settings” to open your Settings menu.
Open your security settings. Once you have the Settings window open, you’ll see a number of tabs on the left side of the Settings window. “Security” should be the second tab down, just under “General.” Click on “Security” to open your security settings.
Set up Login Alerts. Login Alerts send you an alert when someone logs into your account from a new device or browser. You can choose to get login alerts via Facebook notifications, email, or text messages. To activate these alerts, click on “Edit” to the right of “Login Alerts,” choose where you want the alerts sent (you’ll need your mobile phone number for text alerts), and click on “Save Changes.”
Activate Login Approvals. Login Approvals gives your account an extra level of security by requesting a security code when you log in from an unknown browser. To set up Login Approvals, click on the word “Edit” to the right of “Login Approvals,” then click on “Get Started” to begin the setup wizard.
Choose Trusted Contacts. Your “Trusted Contacts” are friends that Facebook enables to securely help you if you ever have trouble accessing your account. To add Trusted Contacts, click on “Edit” to the right of “Trusted Contacts,” then click on the words “Choose trusted contacts” (in blue). This will open a new window. Click on the “Choose Trusted Contacts” button to continue, enter your Facebook friends’ names into the text box, and hit “Confirm.”
Review Your Browsers and Apps. Click on “Edit” to the right of “Your Browsers and Apps” to see which browsers you have saved as ones that you often use. If you see something on that list that doesn’t belong, click “Remove,” then “Save Changes.”