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Every few months, even weeks, you see them pop up on your social media pages. The Facebook posts say something like “Take this quiz and we’ll tell you all about yourself.”
But what personal information are you willingly giving out and can it be used against you later?
The Better Business Bureau in Eastern Idaho told KMVT that you may want to think twice before doing one of the quizzes.
“We just advise people to be really careful because sometimes the link on those can lead you to scammers that are trying to pick information out,” Jeremy Johnson told KMVT.
What are scammers looking for then? They’re trying to get users to willingly give away private information that makes you, you. Information like a birthday, your name and even addresses.
“Once they get that information they can really use that to damage. They can open accounts in your name, go into your bank account, access more information and as we all know that can be very detrimental,” Johnson told KMVT.
“I don’t know if people realize what they’re giving up here,” Russ Sabella, a social media expert who teaches at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Meyers, Florida, told WBBH.
“I don’t know if people realize what they’re giving up here. Some people will say I have nothing to hide. That may be true, but at the same time, do you realize that what you’re giving up is going to be connected to other data from other websites and other apps and put together could be a picture of you that you would rather not be in someone else’s hands?” Sabella said.
So how can you protect yourself, other than an outright personal ban on the quizzes?
WBBH reported that Sabella suggests first read the terms and conditions. Second, use an email that has no other purpose than for quizzes so scammers don’t have access to your contact list and can’t create a profile of you. Also, Sabella says, use social networks’ security checks and guidelines every few months so you know how much personal information is shared.
Finally, if you’re being taken off-site, that could be a red flag that it’s not a legitimate quiz, KMVT reported.