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Facebook Quizzes - Good or Bad?

Facebook gives people something to do in these times of extreme boredom with its many games, surveys, and quizzes and around 1.62 million people access it daily. However, there is an unseen danger to some of these quizzes on Facebook.

While these quizzes are on Facebook this doesn’t mean they are created and run by Facebook.

So what does this mean for me?

There have been many cases of these quizzes being used to harvest user data and your data can then be used for:

  • Guessing the security questions on your account

  • Sold to a third-party marketing company

  • Identity theft

One example of this happening is:

A company called Vonvon created a “Your most used words on Facebook” quiz which had reached around 16 million shares worldwide. The idea behind the quiz was that it displayed your most used words in a fancy spider diagram. But, before you were shown your most used words, the quiz asked for permission to access information from your Facebook account such as your; IP address, access to all posts, photos, information about the device you’re using, browser and a lot more.

Another example:

During the 2016 U.S Election, the company 'Cambridge Analytica' was discovered to have had used personal data from Facebook apps without the consent of the individuals. The total amount of user’s data was harvested from was around 50 million users then tailored adverts were used to help Donald Trump advertise his campaign.

So how can I keep myself safe?

It's simple!

Be more aware of what you are allowing access to.

Think to yourself: 'Why does this app want access to my photos?'

It is a massive red flag as to why would a simple Facebook quiz would need your personal details, device info and photos to allow you to play. "Remember: Free quizzes offered on social media actually aren't free — you're paying with your personal data that big data companies collect for targeted advertising, or cyber criminals collect to sell on the dark web. "(source)

Blog post written by volunteer Peer Educator Jack, April 2020

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