Social Media Games – Harmless or Harmful?

Social Media Games – Harmless or Harmful?

While originally designed for connecting and interacting with other people, many people take advantage of games and other time passing activities that have developed in recent years. While it may seem like a harmless way to pass the time, these activities can be potentially harmful to your digital identity.

If you have ever been on sites such as Facebook, then you have seen posts such as “Find out what Harry Potter character you are” or “What state do you belong in?.” These types of quizzes have become extremely popular but also pose a significant threat. Before taking a quiz, you must allow the developers to access your personal information and items such as your friend’s information. This means even if you do not take quizzes, but you have a someone on your friends list who does, your information could potentially be shared with the developer1. While not every quiz you see on social media sites is phishing for your information, fraudsters can set up quizzes in this manner to gather information on potential victims.

Additionally, a new potential threat has emerged in the recent weeks that does not include third party applications but rather through each users’ status. The viral game suggests users post a list of 10 concerts, nine they have attended and one they haven’t. Other users then guess which one they have not attended. This may seem like a harmless way to interact with other users, however, there is potential danger in participating. Online security questions may have you answer the question of “what is the first concert you attended?”2.  Once a user has posted the list of concerts they have attended, it is simple trial and error for an identity thief to identify the answer your security questions.

Despite the risks associated with social media, there are ways you can protect yourself against these potentially harmful games. First, you can adjust your security settings to restrict what can be shared with third parties through quizzes or other add-ons. Secondly, you can also answer security questions to other online accounts with a non-sequitur.

With InfoArmor’s database of compromised credentials, if you are a PrivacyArmor® participant, we will alert you if any of your credentials are found on the dark web as a result of identity thieves. As a PrivacyArmor participant, you also have access to SocialArmor® which will protect you against reputational damage on social media.

  1. http://www.fightidentitytheft.com/blog/facebook-quizzes-sharing-your-private-data
  1. http://www.express.co.uk/life-style/science-technology/799157/Facebook-Login-10-Concert-Prank-Warning


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