Everybody's Lying on Facebook

One-quarter of survey respondents admitted to altering their info

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted May 3, 2012 11:38 AM CDT

(Newser) – How to protect your privacy on Facebook? For an increasing number of users, the answer is simple: Lie. A quarter of respondents in a new Consumer Reports study admitted that they “alter personally identifiable information,” such as birthdate, on Facebook. Technically, that’s a violation of the social networking site’s Terms of Service, the New York Times points out. And more than twice as many people are doing it now as were two years ago, when the same question was asked.

Most of those surveyed said they protected their privacy by adjusting various settings, while almost 20% said they didn’t do anything to protect their privacy. Consumer Reports says the increase in people who lie is proof that users are becoming more wary of Facebook, and the organization’s advocacy arm is urging Facebook, via a petition, to strengthen its privacy controls. The Consumer Reports study also found that a large number of Facebook users revealed information on the site that could hurt them, including their whereabouts on a particular day or health information.

This Feb. 1, 2012 photo shows the Facebook logo on a computer screen in Berlin.
This Feb. 1, 2012 photo shows the Facebook logo on a computer screen in Berlin.   (AP Photo/dapd, Timur Emek)
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