Most of the time, we think of securing our e-mail accounts more than our social networking accounts like Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter. I looked back at my fraud hunting experience and found that it’s true, scammers/hackers love to compromise e-mail accounts like their “old school” prey. Get More Info about all that here.
However, these questions rise inside my head:
How were they able to guess that your password is your birthday?
How did they know the answer to your secret question?
Where in “H” did they get all those private information?
Most of the time, the victims thought that they’re being watched by the bad guys while they’re typing that info on their keyboard or something might have been stolen from their bag with the info, or maybe someone accessed their computer using some sort of spyware. On rare occasions, they think of their family relatives who might have accidentally divulged the information to anybody.
Yes, indeed. Those are the possible ways why the hackers/scammers were able to know access to their email or other accounts. But you know what, bad guys have an open list of people’s information where they can easily get a possible victim. It was so open that even we can easily see it. But where and how? The answer: Check your own social networking accounts.
One example here is an account from a unanimous person from MySpace. His profile is in non-private mode. Meaning, everyone can see it. I checked out his “About Me” section, and got the following:
“Hi! I’m 19 y/o from Dallas, TX. My friends Keith, Troy, and John are my family forever. We have a hound puppy named Gerby, a gift from my mom on my birthday. We love him so much.
My friends and I love to play World of Warcraft, Second Life, and Vampire Wars. We also love to hang out at Troy’s mini-car wash. That’s where we earn bucks. LoL.”
That was short and simple, right? It has lots of information, though. As you can see, he mentioned his age in the first part of the whole article. And most of the time, Myspace shows a zodiac sign on the profile.
So let’s say he was born on the Zodiac Scorpio which date ranges from October 22 to November 30. And he said that he’s 19 this year (1990.) Therefore, there are 30 possible answers to this person’s birthday. Plus, the information like his friend names, dog’s name, the birthday gift from his mom, and his hometown are the best possible answers to his secret questions.
Even pictures would help the scammers track the information like your family member’s name, where do you study/work. So next time, be careful about posting information on your social networking accounts, even on your blogs, especially should that information would give the bad guys an idea to access your account.
While for those people whose profile is in private mode, be careful about adding the people you don’t know. They won’t be able to see your profile but once you added them as to your friends that’s the time when they going to start getting information from you.
The best way to prevent this from happening is to change your password every now and then. Or, don’t post information to your profile that is connected to your password. Even “Don’t talk to strangers” is the best prevention 🙂