E-Threats Social Networks

Facebook Teens More Vulnerable to Stalkers

Teenagers who create a Facebook account are more vulnerable to stalkers and cyber-crooks, as their posts and photos will be widely available if they don’t carefully check their privacy settings, according to PC PRO.

The setting that previously limited who could see teenagers’ online activities became more widely available. However, Facebook users can still manually set privacy options to avoid sharing information with the entire world.

Facebook Teens More Vulnerable to Stalkers Bitdefender warns the decision to remove the privacy restriction for users under 18 may raise the number of scams targeting kids.

“Teens are among the savviest people using of social media, and whether it comes to civic engagement, activism, or their thoughts on a new movie, they want to be heard,” Facebook representatives said. “While only a small fraction of teens using Facebook might choose to post publicly, this update now gives them the choice to share more broadly, just like on other social media services.”

But NGO representatives believe otherwise.

“Teens don’t necessarily have good judgment and to the extent that they make themselves visible to the wider public, there’s all kind of people – from predators to junk food marketers – who are surveilling Facebook for new kinds of targets,” Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the non-profit Center for Digital Democracy, told Reuters.

Chester claims Facebook is sacrificing the safety and privacy of teenagers for marketing purposes. The social network said teenagers’ information will become public for a narrower group of people, and not for the total user base. Facebook will also notify users under 18 the first couple of times they try to post information, reminding them it can be seen by anyone.

Until now, teenagers’ posts and pictures on Facebook could only be viewed by their friends and friends of friends. The social network has over 1.15 billion users worldwide.

This month, Facebook opened the new Graph Search, which allows everyone to search for old posts, status updates and for every comment, photo caption and check-in users ever posted on the platform since opening an account. HotFORSecurity warned users to carefully check their privacy settings to fight Graph Search abuse.

About the author


Bianca Stanescu, the fiercest warrior princess in the Bitdefender news palace, is a down-to-earth journalist, who's always on to a cybertrendy story. She's the industry news guru, who'll always keep a close eye on the AV movers and shakers and report their deeds from a fresh new perspective. Proud mother of one, she covers parental control topics, with a view to valiantly cutting a safe path for children through the Internet thicket. She likes to let words and facts speak for themselves.

1 Comment

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  • I agree with NGO. Doctors state that the part of the brain that is responsible for actions/consequences is not developed until the age of 18. I did not say this rater doctors. Aren’t children targeted for goods enough on TV? When targeting children with advertisements, the parents are getting nagged by their children for the advertised goods.

    Back off of children. This also makes it easier for preditors; some children lack common sense. My friend’s daughter met someone from FL and had a piece of paper in her hand with his number. Long story short had I not caught this she was going to call an unknown man from FL. BACK OFF FACEBOOK; some limitations are necessary.

    Protect our children and don’t do this.