Facebook polls and games may pose potential security risks to your device, leading to unauthorized access to personal information.
- Participating in seemingly harmless activities can provide hackers with access to seemingly irrelevant information that can be used maliciously.
- Granting access to certain parts of your profile or downloading unknown software can expose your device to potential vulnerabilities.
- Hackers are not always easily identifiable, and staying safe online requires vigilance and awareness.
There was a time when Facebook was a treasure trove of games, like Farmville. Looking back, it’s quite concerning how we coughed up so much information completely disregarding where said information might end up. This begs the question: “Are Facebook polls and games compromising my security?”
Are They Really Dangerous?
When it comes down to it, everything you do online compromises you, from silly little quizzes like “Which Sock Are You?” to shareable, interactive polls. And while these online activities are not dangerous by default, hackers could use them to inconspicuously access certain seemingly unimportant information. Let’s say you are bored and doom scrolling on Facebook. You come across one of those Facebook polls asking people where they grew up. Thinking nothing of it, you participate. Here’s the catch, such questions are often used as security questions because, realistically, you are the only person, besides your parents, who are supposed to know such details. Now, someone out there knows too.
Another way malicious players get a hold of you is through permissions. Sometimes to answer certain quizzes, they request the download of certain software on your device, or they request access to certain parts of your profile. These things can grant hackers access to personal information. An app could be reading scavenging your phone for details, for example.
Not too long ago, in 2019, Ukrainian hackers used quizzes to access private Facebook data, CNN reported. They relied on seemingly innocent quizzes like “What does your eye color say about you? to lure in victims and download what the social media platform called “malicious browser extensions” to gain unbridled access to user data.
Hackers have never been as they are portrayed in the media. They could be as innocent-looking as the suited-up guy sitting next to you in the coffee shop. And sometimes the Facebook polls reach you through a sweet, old granny.
Keeping Safe Out There
Trying to stay safe online these days seems easier said than done. You can’t just interact with applications and websites like you are going through the tabloid magazine at the dentist’s office. You have to start noticing and reading the fine print, especially when it comes to Facebook, where a majority of financially established people, mostly boomers, are chronically online. So how to keep yourself, your bank account, and any other sensitive information safe?
- Read the Fine Print: Read the fine print of whatever you are agreeing on. Don’t just accept all without a care. This rule is essential, especially when it comes to permission requests.
- Keep your device up-to-date: Don’t ignore system updates on the dates and definitely update your antivirus. Those are crucial to ensure that any vulnerability is taken care of, and neutralized. Better that it catches the weakness rather than some morally questionable hacker.
- Multi-Factor Authenticator: this very nifty trick basically puts another roadblock between the offender and your accounts. It is a randomly generated number through a special app that you have to enter before you fully log in.
Is this a ridiculous way to gather information? Absolutely. But just because it is simple doesn’t mean it’s not effective. And it gets exhausting. Always double checking everything, never trusting anything or anyone online. But the alternative is to give your identity up on a silver platter. Facebook polls and quizzes are fun and ridiculous but are they worth the risk? Stay safe out there and happy surfing!
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