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Afraid Someone Will Hack Into Your Facebook?

By Shivam Ratnani 

Recently a close friend of mine re-added me on Facebook. I was confused, and then she told me that her original profile had been hacked. She is a hardcore Facebook-addict and told me that she felt like someone had stolen her identity, maybe because she was tagged in loads of pictures and posts with her close friends and families. When asked what security measures she’ll take to protect this new account, she was dumbfounded. This incident made me realize that there are many more people who are at risk of getting their internet accounts, and not only Facebook accounts, hacked into just because of their lack of awareness. What can we do to protect our Facebook, twitter, and Google+ memories among others? Here I have listed a few simple tips that can help you protect your internet accounts from being compromised:

Tip 1: Set a stronger password!
Try to look beyond the option of convenience or an easy to recall password. Remember, if it’s convenient for you, it may be as convenient for a hacker. Try to avoid phone numbers or names of a companion or spouse as they are the first guesses. You’ll need to come up with a strong & unique password which includes a combination of alphabets, numbers and even alphanumeric characters (such as !@#$.... and so on). If you’re afraid you’ll forget the password, note it down on a piece of paper and keep it in your wallet or in any secured personal space.

Tip 2: Don’t give obvious answers to security questions.

While answering security questions, give such answers that only you can relate to or come up with. It may be something abstract or random, not necessarily related to the question. It’s easy to find out someone’s personal information, like a favorite book or a pet’s name or the place of one’s birth. Therefore, it is important to make sure only you yourself remember what you answered.

Tip 3: Avoid usage of the same password for every account.
It’s a common mistake for people to use the same password for multiple accounts. The security levels of various service providers may vary. If a hacker gets access to the password of a weak service provider, he can access the other accounts with higher security, and you wouldn’t be able to do anything about it as the hacker has already obtained the password.

Tip 4: Keep resetting passwords frequently.
It may be a difficult feat to come up with a strong & innovative password in the first place, but it is not a smart move to stick to it forever. It is recommended you change your password every couple of months. So wrack your brains every once in a while & come up with a different password.

Tip 5: Don’t provide 3rd party web applications details of your account.
Many people get duped by bogus applications that make larger than life promises and claims of providing services and offers, by asking the ‘lucky customers’ to provide their account information in order to avail those said offers . Your account details are for yours & yours only to keep, disclosing any detail may lead to the account being compromised in the future.

Tip 6: Don’t trust ANYONE.
If you have many people coming over, it is advisable not to save your password on your browser, just to be on the safer side. There have also been cases in Facebook recently, with people complaining that they had been personally contacted by a ‘Facebook Official’ saying that there have been many complaints against the page they own and Facebook needs to keep a close eye on the page and for that to happen one has to add that ‘official’ & ‘temporarily’ transfer ownership to him of the page to keep a check on the activities of that page. They may even show proof like being tagged ‘works at Facebook’ in the work-place column and to seal the deal, a link that opens the pages you own. By agreeing to do so, you enable the ‘Official’ to not only start spamming fans and other pages through that page, but you also lose ownership of the page permanently.

So, the things to know are: Firstly, anyone can tag ‘Facebook’ as their workplace and the link for the pages is a universal link that opens the owned/administrated pages of the person who opens that link. Keep these things in mind the next time you are ‘personally contacted by a Facebook official’. 

An easier way of preventing this? Well, one just has to remember that any Facebook official does not personally contact an individual to warn them of their actions.

Following these handy tips will keep your account safe & yours forever. Super Surfing to all!

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Shivam Ratnani
A jack of many trades, yet still looking for one to master! As a person I’m used to having his passion towards things mistaken as aggression. I’m easy to get along with, easier to tick-off (just saying).


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