Police have issued a Facebook quiz scam alert, warning everyone that those “harmless” quizzes may not actually be all that harmless after all.
Who doesn’t love a good quiz? After all, how else would you find out which Disney princess you are or what kind of food matches your personality?
But what may seem like innocent fun can actually give thieves a leg up on stealing your identity.
Facebook Quiz Scam Alert
Think about it. Some of those seemingly random questions may not be all that random. Who was your first-grade teacher? What was your favorite pet’s name? What’s the first name of your childhood best friend?
The Sutton Police Department points out that questions like these are commonly used when setting up an account. And by supplying this information in a social media quiz, you may be handing hackers the keys to your identity.
“Please be aware of some of the posts you comment on,” the Facebook quiz scam alert posted by the Massachusetts police department reads. “The posts that ask what was your first-grade teacher, who was your childhood best friend, your first car, the place you [were] born, your favorite place, your first pet, where did you go on your first flight, etc…Those are the same questions asked when setting up accounts as security questions.” You are giving out the answers to your security questions without realizing it.”
Social Media Quizzes May Reveal More Than You Realize
Likewise, Country Living showed how a popular Christmas Elf quiz can put valuable information into hacker’s hands.
This quiz uses the first letter of your first name and your birth month to determine your “Elf” name. So, when you post your response, online hackers can figure out your birth month and then click through to your profile page to get more information.
“A nugget of information in isolation may not seem like a big deal, but combining that with other data that may be out there can result in a greater threat,” says Rachel Rothman, Chief Technologist for the Good Housekeeping Institute. “Be mindful of photos or posts that could give away information about your location or self (like your birthday) and consider if you are posting something that could be used to locate you offline or make it easier for someone to figure out any of your passwords.”
While the person posting and sharing these quizzes may not have any nefarious intentions, your response puts the information out there for all to see. That can be scammers or, as the Better Business Bureau points out, data mining companies who sell your information to other businesses.
We know it’s hard missing out on which character from your favorite TV show you’d be. Still, it may be best to skip the next online quiz to come across your News Feed. 🙂
Be sure to share this Facebook quiz scam alert with your friends so they can keep their information safe, too!
h/t: Country Living
Featured Image Credit: Pixabay
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