Facebook quizzes are a privacy nightmare. As fun as it is to see a cloud of your most used social media words, see who your “Disney Princess Soulmate” is or see “What Game of Thrones Character Matches You”, you may have inadvertently exposed a lot more than you bargained for.
Facebook quiz apps are designed to mine your Facebook data. The privacy agreement, that most users accept without reading, opens the app to harvest both yours and your friend’s data. Seemingly innocent questions are used to profile users, and the app will then harvest data from your profile, as well as all of your friend’s profiles. These user profiles are on-sold to advertisers, political campaign profilers and scammers.
Once the quiz is complete, the app is still linked to your Facebook account and can continue to mine data. This is due to the app permissions you granted back when you first did the quiz. Take a few moments to remove these permissions from your Facebook account.
- Head to Facebook and select SETTINGS from the drop-down menu
- Select APPS AND WEBSITES
- Review the companies and developers you have granted access to your profile. Any that aren’t used, recognised or wanted can be removed using the tick-box next to the company. Select the item and choose REMOVE. Accept the prompt that this will also remove any posts the company made on your Facebook profile on your behalf.
Cambridge Analytica, leveraged during the Trump campaign, as well as the NameTests data leak to a publicly accessible website, are recent examples of exploits of user’s data.
It’s safer NEVER to take Facebook quizzes, and ensure you’ve removed the access to your data from apps or quizzes you’ve previously taken. No-one will miss the post about “Which Cat Matches Your Lifestyle” anyhow!