NEW YORK — Many of us have participated in harmless surveys — ones that help us connect with our social media “friends,” and kill a little time — but are they really “harmless”?
As the “10 Concerts I’ve Been To, One is a Lie” list continues to dominate Facebook news feeds, multiple security experts spoke to the New York Times about how these lists aren’t always just about fun and games.
Regarding online security, experts told the Times these lists can tip hackers off to your passwords, or password security questions (think about how many times you’ve been asked to name the first concert you ever went to).
This particular survey poses a “moderate security risk,” Michael Kaiser, executive director of the National Cyber Security Alliance, tells the Times.
Even more likely, and dangerous, is the information thousands of people are handing over to marketers, likely without realizing it. From such posts, Kaiser warns, your age, musical tastes and other information, such as religious affiliation, can be revealed.
“You are expressing things about you, maybe in more subtle ways than you might think,” Kaiser tells the newspaper.
All of this can be used to help marketers target ads.
So before writing your next “harmless” Facebook post, or take another online survey, security experts tell the Times social media users should think outside the box, and consider what a devious stranger might be able to gather from that information.