A Study on Privacy and Security Aspects of Facebook

A Study on Privacy and Security Aspects of Facebook

Syed Hassan Faraz (Department of Computer Science, Bahria University, Islamabad, Pakistan), Syed Hassan Tanvir (Department of Computer Science, Bahria University, Islamabad, Pakistan) and Saqib Saeed (Department of Computer Science, Bahria University, Islamabad, Pakistan)
Copyright: © 2012 |Pages: 8
DOI: 10.4018/jtd.2012100105
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Abstract

Social web has changed the concept of leisure time. As a result street neighbors have been replaced by e-neighbors and walls have become e-walls to share ideas and gossips. Despite so many advantages we cannot ignore potential threats to user privacy and security. In order to be extremely usable, such systems should have strict security and privacy policies in place. In this paper the authors focus on “Facebook” to understand privacy and security problems by carrying out a web based survey. Based on the findings from empirical data the authors propose different enhancements for the improvement of user privacy and potential threats to user account security.
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2. Empirical Study

In order to gather empirical data we established a questionnaire. We selected freeonlinesurveys.com to post our survey. We floated survey link to thousands of users. More than 370 users participated in survey to give their opinion. 341 participants were from Pakistan and 33 were from USA. Despite of our effort we were not able to get view of people from other countries due to short period of time. As a result our findings are mainly limited to Pakistani users. Age classification is important to understand responses of users. In our survey 55% of users reported their age between 16-21 years when they started using facebook. The starting age (21-30 years) covered 22% and 20% respondents were 30 + in age, as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1.

Age of Facebook user at start time

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