Indentity Theft!

Identity theft:  Facebook applications and games assert access to your profile and a malicious app could compile enough information to steal your identity or masquerade as your business online.

Here is a report :

Facebook Users Risk Blackmail, Canada Privacy Chief Tells Globe

By Joe Schneider

Facebook , the world’s most popular social networking Web site, may leave users open to becoming victims of blackmail by reducing the protection of personal information, the Globe and Mail reported, citing Canada’s top privacy official.

The change “opens the possibility that a lot of people can be blackmailed,” Jennifer Stoddardt, Canada’s privacy commissioner, told the Toronto-based newspaper. The company is moving in the “opposite direction” of what it promised last year when it agreed to improve the way personal information is collected and used, Stoddardt said.

Closely held Facebook is allowing third-party developers who design games and other Facebook applications to store user data indefinitely, rather than having to delete the data after 24 hours, as they were required to do earlier.

Facebook had agreed to install better safeguards by the end of July. Canadian regulators don’t plan to take any steps until the deadline expires, the Globe said.

Facebook representatives said privacy concerns are always at the forefront of any new product development, the Globe said citing an e-mail from the representatives, who weren’t identified.

From here we can see that facebook already becomes into a hard situation when it faces its security problem.  So the insecurity caused by Facebook may treat to personal safety either online or in real life. Furthermore, it may increase social risks while people begin participating in minority groups.   And there are a lot people would like to share their information and photos, so they do not pay enough attention to the risk between self-disclosure and treats from others. When people get the personal information from your facebook, they may use your personal information to threat you or deal with something else illegal.

There are two levels of information:

1.personal identity information: gender, age and photos

2.sensitive personal information: email, phone number, job, employer, school, status, feed updates, wall messages, personal photos /photo albums(including tagged photos) , friends list ( access to friends’ information) , religion, political views, sexual preference, and relationship status, activities .

Facebook launched its widely popular application developer program back in May 2007. As of press time, there were more than 14,000 applications. Some, including most of the popular apps, are made by companies, while a few of the popular apps, and a significant number of the long tail of the less popular applications are made by individual developers.But a new study suggests there may be a bigger problem with the applications. Many are given access to far more personal data than they need to in order to run, including data on users who never even signed up for the application. Not only does Facebook enable this, but it does little to warn users that it is even happening, and of the risk that a rogue application developer can pose.