Do you like to take Facebook quizzes? Well, it’s time to stop! Yes, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but according to police, taking these quizzes can lead to identity theft. How? Well, the harmless guilty pleasure surveys that flood your feed could wind up in providing info for hackers with the answers to your online security questions.
Popular quizzes often ask Facebook users to answer a series of sharable personal information such as the name of their pet or where they were born. Some people see these quizzes as a fun way to bond with friends or a way to make new ones, but police are now saying that many of these queries are similar, if not identical, to security questions used by banks and other institutions.
The Sutton Police Department in Massachusetts shared a warning on Facebook, asking users to be careful of the posts you comment on and how much they share while taking these quizzes. Usually, posts that ask you a personal question, such as your first car, you childhood best friend, or your favorite color, can be the same question asked when setting up an account as a security question or your recovery question while logging in to get your credit card information. This is how hackers easily gain access to your info and block you out. Hackers can then use the questions to build a profile by hacking into your account, or open lines of credit. They could also trick you into clicking on a virus and send you malicious links.
Of course, experts do say it’s okay to take part in Facebook quizzes, but only those that don’t ask you to reveal any personal facts. You should only take quizzes from well known websites, and always be careful of those that ask for your email address to access the quiz or poll. Experts also recommend using “fake information” when filling out for password recovery prompts that aern’t trackable to you in any way. Here are a few questions you might want to avoid filling out:
- What is your full name?
- What is your mother’s maiden name?
- What is your mother’s first name?
- What is your favorite color?
- What is the first car you owned?
- What year did you graduate high school?
- What is your date of birth?
- What is the name of your first pet?
- What is your favorite place?
- Where did you go on your first flight?
- What is the name of your first-grade teacher?
- What is your birth month?
It’s important to remember that everything you post on social media is, well, public. So you might want to watch out and just be aware of those questionable posts! Social media users should always update their Facebook privacy setting to hide their personal information and phone number to avoid a much greater threat.