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South African Information Security Multi-Conference (SAISMC 2010)
Title: The Wild Wide West of Social Networking
Author(s): Edwin Donald Frauenstein, Rossouw von Solms
Keywords: Social networking sites, social networks, social engineering, human aspects, privacy
Abstract: The use of social networking sites has become increasingly popular world-wide. Using social networks, people across the world have access to connect and share information with others from the comfort of their homes. One can establish friendships, contacts, find romance, create discussion topics, join groups, create events and advertise yourself or your business using such sites. However, with every fun and advantageous piece of technology, there is a dark side, especially in an online environment. Social networking sites have opened up many new doorways for cyber-crime and with new users rapidly joining these sites every day, it is important that people are aware and understand the dangers and risks associated when using such sites. The amount of personal information which users willingly share on these sites, poses particular security and privacy problems. The objective of this paper is to warn and alert social networking users of the dangers that lurk on popular sites such as Facebook, Twitter and MySpace. The emphasis is placed on a lack of privacy on the part of the user. Preventative measures and best practices will be suggested to avoid such threats.
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