Sunday, 17 June 2012

Facebook is collecting mobile numbers of its users to prevent spamming

By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad:  What is your mobile number? Next time you login,
do not be surprised if the Facebook asks you to provide your mobile
number to stay in touch with the social networking site.

Facebook is updating its database as a security measure against
hacking, phishing and spamming, and the best way it feels is to keep
your mobile number in its official records. Facebook has around 90
crore active users around the world including five crore in India. The
move follows recent reports of hacking of social networking sites like
Linked In.

Facebook has been collecting mobile numbers since long and it has now
renewed its appeal to active users to help it prevent hacking and
spamming. In case your account is hacked, the social networking site
will send the code or password to the registered mobile number. Gmail
too follows this.

“At Facebook, we strive to create a trusted environment for our users
and advertisers…  We look forward to working with the industry to find
ways to make the web safer,” a post by Facebook security team said.

It also cautioned users against “please send money” scam which many
mistake it to be genuine. “Sometimes, this looks like a message from a
random Facebook user asking you for money for a charity or claiming
that you are eligible for a large reward if you send a little money
first. But more often, "send money" scams occur when someone’s real
Facebook account is taken over by a cyber criminal. These criminals
use the account to send messages or chats to all of that person’s
friends, claiming to be stuck in another country and needing money to
get home,” it warned.

Facebook has updated its privacy settings with a link at the top of
the page urging its users to follow “simple security tips”. The link
takes you to three main security tips, one of which is registration of
mobile phone number. It feels that the mobile sms is better than an
email message as it may go into the spam mailbox.

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