Bugs and worms and mouse-overs — oh my! Social networking sites have been under attack lately, with hundreds of thousands of people estimated to have been affected. Whether it’s security flaws like the “onMouseOver” incident (Twitter) that opened another page when you simply hovered your mouse over a link or “clickjacking” scams (Facebook) that spread fake pages for untold purposes, it’s a trend that seems to be growing and it could affect millions.
Fortunately, most of the current social media scams don’t seem to be dangerous – just annoying. And sometimes embarrassing. The wife of former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, for example, inadvertently spread hard-core porn to 1.2 million Twitter followers. Oops.
But enough of the scams are bona fide attempts to get at your information or install malware on your computer so you definitely need to click with caution (for now it seems it’s OK to hover again).
So how to stay ahead of the game?
1. Click the “Like” button on Facebook’s Security page so updates appear in your News Feed.
2. Follow Twitter for the latest updates on its blog.
3. Change your password on all sites regularly (including on LinkedIn).
And to be sure you don’t inadvertently become part of the scam, delete anything on your Facebook wall that looks suspicious. Clearly anyone can be targeted, including White House press secretary Robert Gibbs.