Thursday, November 17, 2011

Abuse of the word Computer Hacker

In the wake of recent Facebook's security issue which compromised lot of profiles I am seeing lot of posts putting vague information about Hackers and "How to be safe on Facebook".

First and foremost the term Hacker is misused all the time, Hacker is simply a computer enthusiast who loves to tinker with systems, it need not to be a computer all the time. It is not necessary that the term Hacker is related to a crooked mind who misuses the vulnerabilities in a system for a malicious intentions. There is another term for such, it's called Crackers. Know the terminology or do a bit of research in Google
before putting some vague and misinformed posts.

There is no other way to steal information from Facebook but with the help of Facebook users themselves, the unaware masses of secure computing. Facebook has API's (Application Programming Interfaces) for third party applications to make Facebook a better place for your Mafia Wars, Candy Crush and all other stupid stuff, these are the applications which can access your personal information (some can access anytime at will). To know which applications are mapped to your account follow the below steps 

click on the drop down next to Home on top right corner -> click on account settings -> click on apps on the left hand side, bvkmohan, computer hacker, hacker, facebook, privacy

As you can see these are the applications I have authorized to access my content in Facebook. Access content? What content? If we click on edit for any of those applications it shows us what content it can access from our profile., bvkmohan, computer hacker, hacker, facebook, privacy

See? this app is accessing almost everything from my profile. Remember the fact that this application is not a part of Facebook and it has its own privacy policy and user agreements and that's what we have to be careful about.

So every time when we add an application from Facebook or use Facebook Connect for accessing an external website's content, the first time when authenticating it clearly says on the next window about the data it will access from our profiles but (that's a big BUT), most of the time users simple click Next to finish the integration without any clue and that's where things go bad! really bad!!

So please check your's and delete all nonsense applications unless if you are sure.

Understand these simple things, there are lot of options under security(Account Settings) some might be advanced for some users but please know them. Your profile represents you so be sure about the environment.

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