It’s not an exaggeration to say that online social network sites have revolutionized the Web in recent times. Facebook is one of an elite few leading the way; every day, hundreds of people join the website to reconnect with old acquaintances and make new friends.
Another important element of the platform is that it allows app developers to create small programs to use on Facebook. In a way, Facebook is acting like an operating system – it provides the foundation for smaller applications that tap into the social network’s resources.
Facebook’s community includes millions of people, and that gives developers a built-in audience for their work. The nature of Facebook’s community helps developers spread their work virally. Facebook members grab the application after seeing it on a friend’s profile and soon thousands of people are enjoying the app.
On one hand some developers just want to create a fun application for people to enjoy, on the other hand some developers create malicious software in an effort to con users or cause mischief.
Scams are all over Facebook. There are stories telling users that Facebook will end on a certain date, lottery scams, and to buy miracle diet pills.
But how can you avoid these scams?
Use Scambook. It is a complaint resolution platform where customers can let others know about dodgey business practices, scams and identity theft. The company also informs people of scams on social media, and the newest hoaxes that are going viral on Facebook.
Consider who has posted the content on Facebook. Red flags should go up whenever someone shares something on their timeline that seems out of their nature. If you’re not sure, Perry recommends calling or contacting that person offline to see if their account has been hacked.
Be cautious of videos that lure users into giving up personal information or putting malware onto computers. While videos may look legitimate, there are a few clues that users can find to see if they are safe. Look for the youtube.com domain name on videos, and be suspicious of videos with keywords or domain names you haven’t heard of.
- Check your privacy settings often.
- Double-check if something looks suspicious.
- Make sure that the link you’ve clicked on is a secure site. Look in the address bar for https with a lock, verifying the site’s security.
- Only accepted trusted friend requests.
- Make sure you have antivirus software.