November 28, 2010
How likely are you to share your passwords openly with strangers you’ve never met?
Another point to enlighten you on is Facebook’s application permissions. As an end-user, you must be made clearly aware that ALL applications you use on Facebook have access to your profile. These permissions are equivalent to sharing your profile password with a stranger. Examples of some common applications people share information with are, but obviously aren’t limited to: FarmVille, Cafe World, Bejewled Blitz, Social Interview, The Yes/No Game, Bumper Sticker, and ‘Likes This’. To see how many developers (yes, their people too) you are sharing your information with, go to: Account > Privacy Settings. From there in the bottom left, click “Edit your settings” under the “Applications and Websites” section. You will see ‘Applications you use’: “You’re using X applications, games and websites…”
Surprised? Now if I were you, I’d remove or disable all those applications because behind the games, amusement, and interviews are people too- people I have never met who can compromise my information. To do this it’s simple: from the same page, go to “Edit Settings” (far right) and proceed to delete your applications by hitting the “X” on the top right of each application listing.
The risk you run by allowing applications to access your profile is quite obvious. It is the same motivation Facebook has- to share and market information about you. Likewise, by sharing your account information with strangers you are running yourself the risk of account theft. I could technically create a fun Facebook app, post something on your wall about it, and all I’d need you to do is allow the app permission to access your profile. (IE. “Tom answered a secret question about you! View it now.“) Bam! I gave myself access to your profile and you didn’t even know.
Written by Tom Beute– a Christian, barista, and software engineer.