FarmVille, one of the many Facebook applications, is a game with 59 million users. There are other fun, entertaining Facebook apps too, such as FrontierVille and Texas Hold ‘Em, and all of these games can be played between users. However, people access these apps using their unique user IDs, and recent reports show that personal online information is inadvertently getting transmitted to various advertising and Internet tracking companies.
Facebook has had security issues before – and this one is no exception. By accessing user IDs, these third party organizations are now knowledgeable of people’s names and other identification information, and in some cases even getting the info of users’ friends. The information gained by these outside data firms then allows them to build their own profiles of Internet users by tracking their online activities.
While these third parties claim not actually to use the data they are receiving, this is still a major privacy issue. When giving information that you expect to be kept private isn’t kept private, it makes one wonder what other information is out there in the open for anyone to access. And could this issue get worse? What if companies actually do start using the profile information they are building up, targeting people online with unwanted, and perhaps inappropriate, ads? No parent wants their kid receiving advertisements to porn sites, so it’s important to have as many security settings as possible, and alert your kids about keeping their online lives as private as they can.
Have your kids been targeted online by advertisements? What are other ways in which their privacy has been violated online?