Protect Your Face

September 16, 2008

The advent and prevalence of social networking has torn down many of the personal barriers that were once considered universal social norms.  It has redefined what we consider to be personal information and what we will publicly post on the internet.  This has allowed people to create real connections that, just a few years ago, distance and technology would not have allowed.  It does, however, raise some security concerns that demand we exercise social responsibility when taking advantage of what Web 2.0 has to offer.

Over the course of its existence, Facebook has been a benchmark for security among social networking sites.  However, within the last few months even Facebook has fallen victim to the worst of the web… SPAMMERS! Now that we have your attention, please refrain from spiraling into a panic, deleting all of your social accounts, and retreating into the mountains.  Not only is Facebook fighting back against would-be evil doers, but there are simple actions you can take to protect yourself while out in the social spheres.  These are straight from the security experts over at Facebook.

  • Remember, Facebook will never ask for your password in an email, Facebook message, or any medium that isn’t the login page. Though you will need to re-enter your password when you set a security question, change your contact email, or send a virtual gift.

  • Be extra aware of weird Wall posts. Don’t click on any links—on a Wall or elsewhere—if you don’t know where they go.

  • Set a security question for yourself on your Account page. If somehow something malicious shuts you out of your account, you will need the answer to that question in order for our User Operations team to let you back in. (If you’ve already set your security question, you won’t see a prompt for it on your Account page.)

  • Be extra aware of what website you are using to log in to Facebook (and other websites). Phishing websites can be made to look like other websites (like the Facebook log in page), and might try to disguise their urls. Be smart: starts out looking like a legitimate Facebook website, but that part means it’s fraudulent. Set and use a browser bookmark to make sure you always log in from

  • If you see a Wall post that looks like spam on a friend’s Wall, tell the author to delete it and reset their password immediately.

  • Use a modern web browser to benefit from anti-phishing protection

  • Check out This is another method for blocking specific domains that host phishing sites.

If you think you’ve been phished or find a phishing site,

  • Reset your password on your Account page.

  • Report the issue to Facebook here.


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