If it's free - YOU are the product

In this Pivotal IT blog series we will be guiding you through securing some of the most popular media sites.

The release of unencrypted usernames and passwords from the 2012 LinkedIn hack serves as a powerful reminder to review your profile security settings and why it is so important to use a unique password for each account.


From the drop down menu, select privacy and settings. 

Under the account basics tab you will find the date your current password was created and the ability to change and update your password.

The account basics tab also provides details on your active sessions, listing all the places you are signed into LinkedIn. This information can help you identify unauthorized use of your account.  You can sign out of sessions individually or all at once and should do so anytime you reset your password.

Under the privacy tab, you will find selections for data sharing with third parties, advertising preferences and two factor authentication.

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To opt out of sharing basic profile and contact information with third party applications and “trusted third party platforms” select no for both choices under sharing data with third parties. To enable  two-step verification, you will need to provide a phone number.  Turning this feature on will sign you out of all active LinkedIn sessions.


Facebook’s Privacy Check-up is a fast, easy way to check your basic security, but we’re going to drill down into what data is being collected and made accessible to third party apps and advertisers through and connected services.

After selecting “See More Settings” you will find editable categories on the right. The App settings page will show you what apps are currently connected and logged in with your Facebook account. It’s important to note that turning if you turn off the platform completely, you will no longer be able to use applications or websites connected to your Facebook account.

Selecting each app attached to your account will provide the details of the service and what information it collects.  You can remove any item not labeled as “required” by the app by clicking the checkmark to deselect it.
‍Verify each app connected to your account by clicking on the application name. 

For the privacy conscious, a review of “Apps Others Use” section is a recommended.  Here we can see the information anyone with the ability to view your profile (not just friends) can "take" with them to the apps, games and websites they view.

Facebook recently introduced a way to show ads across the web, not just to its own users. A new privacy setting was also released, giving users the ability to limit how their Facebook activity shows up in ads outside the platform.  

Opting out of Facebook tracking your behavior across websites and apps to determine what ads you see is nothing new. But now you can also opt out of your information and activity on Facebook providing information for the ads.  Under Apps in the right navigation menu you will find ad preferences.

The first section allows you to turn off interest based ads and also provides a link to the Digital Advertising Alliance, where you can opt out of interest based advertising for all participating companies across the web. The second section provides control for information shared off the Facebook platform and the ad preferences section contains the catalog of things you have expressed interest in on Facebook, websites and other services connected to your account. Turning off the platform completely means you cannot play games or use applications. You can limit the information by de-selecting the information you do not want to share.

Social media can have tremendous benefits but can also can have serious security risks for organizations. Two of the greatest risks are malware and disclosure of sensitive information.  We hope this blog series will help you mitigate the security risks and limit the amount sensitive information you disclose.

Be sure to check back soon, when we take a look at privacy and security for Twitter and Google.