That “You As The Opposite Sex” On Facebook Thing
We know you've seen it in your Facebook feed. Your friends post it. And it shows them as the opposite sex. Looking into a "magic mirror". Problem is, after you see what your friends look like as the opposite sex, they ask you to follow the link to see what you would look like. And that's where the problem starts. With this and most quizzes like it.
This isn't the first time you've seen this quiz. It's been around for a while and in different forms. And in lieu of the recent Cambridge Analytica/fake news scandal, it's hard to believe so many people are falling for this.
Before you even get started, you are asked to login with Facebook. In other words, you have to give them your username and password to take this quiz or participate. And then after that, give them permission to have access to your friend, photos, and so on. Then you get your results and are given the option to share. Your friends see it, repeat and the cycle goes on. But giving them your Facebook username and password is just the beginning of setting yourself up for a world of pain and frustration.
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) warns that what you share online could be used for illegal or unethical reasons. Social media quizzes – especially popular on Facebook – seem innocent enough. But taking the quiz might mean you are giving away more about yourself than you originally thought, and may extend to your Friends, as well. Some quizzes are designed to steal your data in an outright scam. According to Khristian Ibarrola, of Inquirer.net “Once answered, hackers can easily hijack personal accounts and use them to lure in more victims.” The hackers will include links embedded in the quiz that can cause a security breach of your personal accounts. Not all social media quizzes are about unprincipled data collection, but BBB cautions users to be careful about what they share online. Profile data, quiz answers, and more can be used to used to steal your money, or let a scammer pretend to be you in order to steal someone else’s money. And now we know that seemingly innocent information can even be used to build a profile on you that can be sold to anyone trying to influence society.
Tips to avoid social media scams:
- Be skeptical: Before you take a quiz, figure out who created it. Is it a brand you trust?
- Adjust privacy settings: Review your social media account’s privacy settings and be strict about what information you share.
- Remove personal details from your profile: Don’t share information like your phone number or home address on social media accounts.
- Don't give answer to common security questions: Be cautious if the questions in a quiz ask for things like your mother's maiden name, street you grew up on, or name of your high school.
- Don't accept friend requests from people you don’t know.
(Source: Better Business Bureau)