For those using their real headshots for Avatars


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Hi folks,

I'm in IT, specifically data center security compliance manager which basically means I manage engineers designed to protect data and personal information including healthcare data. I see some folks on here using their real faces in their avatars. This place has been very good to me for advice so I thought I would share some info.

Hackers are now using facial recognition for items such as Google Glasses and similar devices. Before they were only copying avatars from Facebook and Linked in but now we've run across a few going to smaller sites like this one because people feel safer in a smaller community to share more personal info. Remember they dont need to copy and paste each avatar, they can run custom scripts to pull down all avatars from a website and since avatars are openly shared they don't need to hack the websites to do it.

If you are using your own picture here I would suggest you change your avatar to your pond or fish or anything but your face. No games, just wanted to keep folks secure.

Remember the Target hack a few months ago? It was far worse than the public knows. Be safe.
 
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Mmathis

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Hi folks,

I'm in IT, specifically data center security compliance manager which basically means I manage engineers designed to protect data and personal information including healthcare data. I see some folks on here using their real faces in their avatars. This place has been very good to me for advice so I thought I would share some info.

Hackers are now using facial recognition for items such as Google Glasses and similar devices. Before they were only copying avatars from Facebook and Linked in but now we've run across a few going to smaller sites like this one because people feel safer in a smaller community to share more personal info. Remember they dont need to copy and paste each avatar, they can run custom scripts to pull down all avatars from a website and since avatars are openly shared they don't need to hack the websites to do it.

If you are using your own picture here I would suggest you change your avatar to your pond or fish or anything but your face. No games, just wanted to keep folks secure.

Remember the Target hack a few months ago? It was far worse than the public knows. Be safe.
Thanks for the info -- I never use a picture of myself, but not for that reason....
 
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I'm still afraid to use a debit / credit card at Target. Probably should consider using cash a whole lot more and the debit card, a whole lot less!
 
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I'm still afraid to use a debit / credit card at Target. Probably should consider using cash a whole lot more and the debit card, a whole lot less!
Knowing the laughable security at most retail data-centers I wouldn't recommend anyone using a store credit card. PCI compliance is a joke which is what most datacenters use for security checks. Its basically an audit checklist to see if companies are staying secure then they can hang that little merit badge on their company for being PCI compliant. Most however with the certification are not.

Put it this way, most datacenters are now on leased space. Companies pay other companies to host their equipment. A typical sublet datacenter can have as many as 20-30 different customers running around in it with 5-10 customers per room. Most retailers do this for economic reasons since its cheaper than owning the land and the building. Now a tech from one company who gets into that room can theoretically have access to multiple data centers in just one room. The way around that is to put in a cage. Think of it like chain mail fence around a bunch of servers with a door. Most companies don't want the extra expense because they think that the security of the building is good enough. The real security found in google, yahoo and Microsoft have retina scanners for each entrance point and thumb print scanners for each server just to access. But with all companies it comes down to cashola and most wont spend the extra bucks to keep you safe. I wont get into the software updates because that will scare you half to death ;)
 
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So it's not safe to have photo's on facebook either?
Not as your main avatar. Frankly not at all. Sorry :( Ever notice your name appears on photos with you in it? Hackers see that too unfortunately.

I dont use my real name on facebook. Linked in is actually a better resource for hackers since people want to be found there.

You could just change a letter in your name on facebook and it would help a bunch.

And keep the cat away from the internet. He's up to no good

 
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JBtheExplorer

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I've got my own photos on other sites, I'm not worried about it. Eventually they'll say not to type because hackers will pick up your typing habits. There's only so much I'm willing to worry about. The way I see it, if you use the internet, you should go into it expecting to get hacked at some point and use that to decide what you will and wont post.
 
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Hi folks,

I'm in IT, specifically data center security compliance manager which basically means I manage engineers designed to protect data and personal information including healthcare data. I see some folks on here using their real faces in their avatars. This place has been very good to me for advice so I thought I would share some info.

Hackers are now using facial recognition for items such as Google Glasses and similar devices. Before they were only copying avatars from Facebook and Linked in but now we've run across a few going to smaller sites like this one because people feel safer in a smaller community to share more personal info. Remember they dont need to copy and paste each avatar, they can run custom scripts to pull down all avatars from a website and since avatars are openly shared they don't need to hack the websites to do it.

If you are using your own picture here I would suggest you change your avatar to your pond or fish or anything but your face. No games, just wanted to keep folks secure.

Remember the Target hack a few months ago? It was far worse than the public knows. Be safe.
I'm having trouble figuring out how someone using facial recognition to get my avatar pic off of a garden pond forum is going to put me at risk for anything? Especially since I'm not using my real name for my username.
 
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I'm having trouble figuring out how someone using facial recognition to get my avatar pic off of a garden pond forum is going to put me at risk for anything? Especially since I'm not using my real name for my username.
It depends if they can link your picture with another online forum you use like facebook or linked in. Anything where your real name would be associated with your real face is what they are after. These scripts are becoming extremely sofisticated.

Say for example you use your real face but your online name. If you use that same online name for an account somewhere else where it is actually tied to your real name and they buy that information they have a reference point for your picture.
 
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