AVG Launches Compaign Against Facebook 'Status Jacking'
Anti-virus software maker AVG Technologies has started an online campaign to help college students combat the problem of “Status Jacking” – when someone hacks into a user’s Facebook page and posts fake and often malicious status updates.
The campaign was announced in a Sept. 15 press release which explained that, among the top 50 worldwide social networks, there are 19,491 compromised web pages, 11,701 of which are on Facebook.
The security push comes on the heels of research done by AVG’s Threat Labs, which provides safety analyses of websites.
According to Threat Labs research, students ages 18-25 are the most at-risk group for becoming victims of social media hacking. Threat Labs cited a Pew Research Center poll from Feb. 2010 that found that 72 percent of 18-29 year olds use social networking websites. Those users, AVG determined, are the demographic least likely to take Internet security concerns seriously.
A Sept. 17 AVG Blog post delved further into the problems with “Status Jacking,” and provided safety measures.
“Status Jacking can ruin your reputation in a very short period of time,” read the blog. “All it takes is a few posts saying defamatory, libelous, or outright obscene things, and the damage is done. Even if you are able to eventually explain what has happened, it will take your audience a long time to trust anything you post again.”
The blog urged Facebook users to ensure their privacy by never leaving a laptop unprotected, especially in a shared space. The blog also suggested creating a strong password composed of at least 12 characters to guard against password theft.