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Tech Tip: Is it Safe to Log Into Websites using Facebook or other social media accounts?

Caution SignIf you have any social media accounts, you no doubt have seen requests from other sites to log in with your Facebook, Twitter, or Google account. This makes logging into those websites very convenient because you don’t have to create, let alone remember, another set of usernames and passwors. For example, you can log into the Sears website using just your Facebook account. This can be applied to numerous other sites as well.

By far, the most popular and well-known option is Facebook. In 2008, Facebook introduced Facebook Connect that changed how people log into third-party websites. Now, if you have a Facebook account you are essentially logged into every major site on the web.

As with any form of technology, there are advantages and disadvantages associated with it.

Advantages

  1. No need to remember multiple sets of usernames and passwords for each site.
  2. It is easier to to share your activity on those sites with your friends and family.

Disadvantages

  1. Facebook, Google, Twitter become the "basket where your eggs are". If you lose access to any of those accounts, you lose access to all of the sites that rely on that account.
  2. Similarly, if your account is hacked, the hacker could see what apps you use on Facebook and then log into those websites as you.

Conclusion

The decision is ultimately up to you if you want to use Facebook or other social media sites to log in to third party sites.  If you have multiple social media accounts, you can use each of the different accounts to log in to separate sites. This will limit the damage should your account become compromised.


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