How To: Foursquare Security Issues

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All social networking websites reveal person information about ourselves. However, these risks are escalated when using Foursquare, a website which exists to tell our friends where we are. This article discusses some of the security issues you should be aware of if you use Foursquare.

Its Risky to Broadcast Your Location

If you use Foursquare at a particular business location more than any other person during a certain amount of time, you become the “mayor” of that business. This means that you are at this location a lot of the time. While you probably only want to let your friends know this, anyone with your Foursquare username can access your Foursquare profile to see what businesses you are the mayor of.

And if you post this information automatically on Facebook, anyone who can see your Facebook profile can easily figure out where you are a lot of the time.

Likewise, Foursquare also allows you to post information automatically to your Twitter feed. This lets anyone who is following you on Twitter to know exactly where you are.

If someone knows where you are, this puts your privacy at risk. For example, if someone knows you are not at home, you are a perfect candidate to be robbed. And any harasser or stalker could also easily figure out your location.

Foursquare Security Settings

Foursquare allows you a lot of control over how your personal information is broadcasted to friends and the rest of the foursquare community.

The Settings page lets you manage your privacy controls and options you have regarding which information you would like to keep private and which information you want to share with your friends. Click Sharing with Other Networks to indicate if you want to share your location information with Facebook and Twitter, and click Privacy Settings to manage if you want Foursquare to track your location and share this information with third parties.

 

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Jared Howe

Jared Howe is PRIVATE WiFi’s Senior Manager, Product Marketing Communications. Working in high tech for over 15 years, Jared currently lives in Seattle with his wife, daughter, and their two cats.