Getting hundreds of birthday messages from you Facebook pals could be putting you at risk from a cyber attack.
A new security report from the team at Cifas has revealed that identity theft is up a whopping 57% from last year.
And many cyber crimes are now being committed by scammers who mine social media accounts for personal details.
Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin are all thought to be targets and the more information users give away the more chance of attack.
Names, addresses, telephone numbers and date of birth are often readily available on social platforms and these can be gathered by criminals.
And according to the Get Safe Online campaign even posting pictures can put you at greater risk with the safety website stating: “Be wary of publishing any identifying information about yourself – either in your profile or in your posts – such as phone numbers, pictures of your home, workplace or school, your address or birthday.
The less data you give away the less chance you have of being hit by a cyber crime.
Latest data has revealed that 148,000 people were victim of identity thefts last year with it costing the economy £193bn.
Earlier this week Daily Star Online reported a growing trend in spam email campaigns against Brits, looking to prey on voters’ fears about the effects on the UK economy and national security following the country’s exit from the European Union.
These new emails tempt users into opening them by using subject lines focused on political uncertainty or themed around economic chaos, including currency fluctuations or stock market damages.
Since Britain’s exit from Europe these attacks appear to have become increasingly widespread.
USE SOCIAL MEDIA? HERE’S SOME TOP TIPS FROM GET SAFE ONLINE
• Be wary of publishing any identifying information about yourself – either in your profile or in your posts – such as phone numbers, pictures of your home, workplace or school, your address or birthday.
• Pick a user name that does not include any personal information. For example, “joe_glasgow” or “jane_liverpool” would be bad choices.
• Set up a separate email account to register and receive mail from the site. That way if you want to close down your account/page, you can simply stop using that mail account.
• Use strong passwords with capital letters, numers and symbols
• Keep your profile closed and allow only your friends to view your profile.
• What goes online stays online. Do not say anything or publish pictures that might later cause you or someone else embarrassment.
• Be aware of what friends post about you, or reply to your posts, particularly about your personal details and activities.
• Don’t post your holiday dates – or family photos while you are away – as social networking sites are a favourite research tool for the modern burglar.