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BBB Release: Avoid Web Schemes On Social Networking Sites

Protect Privacy Online

Anchorage, Alaska – June 8, 2010 – Social networking sites are a great tool for networking, socializing and even building business contacts, but site users should be cautious of security threats and criminals looking to exploit profiles.

Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon, and Western Washington encourages responsible use of social networking sites:

  • Avoid choosing obvious, easy-to-guess passwords. Memorize them. Refrain from sharing joint accounts with friends or family.

  • Never give out passwords, Social Security or bank account numbers. Avoid posting information that could be viewable to the public, such as: addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses and birth dates.

  • Review account privacy settings. If it is not a business account, make sure settings are selected to make comments, photos, and contact information only viewable by "friends."

  • Review the privacy policy to see if the company sells or redistributes information to third parties.

  • Depending on your security settings and the website's privacy policy, pictures posted online can be copied, shared and distributed by visitors without your consent.

  • Be cautious when submitting information online; if it's confidential, make sure the site is secure.

  • Be mindful of hackers. Messages on social networking sites could appear to come from friends, but could actually be from strangers who've stolen account information.

  • Parents, Teach Your Kids How to Stay Safe on Social Networks.

Visit www.bbb.org for more advice on how to protect data online. For instant tips and marketplace news updates, follow your BBB on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

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About your BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington:
Your Better Business Bureau is a not-for-profit organization funded by Better Business Bureau Accredited Businesses. The BBB’s mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. For more information about the services and products provided by your BBB, call 206-431-2222 or 253-830-2924 in Washington, 503-212-3022 in Oregon, 907-562-0704 in Alaska, or visit our website at www.bbb.org.

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