C Tann-Starr's Outside Blog


Here's An Interesting Quote. Three Actually. You Need To Protect Yourself Against This...

Here is an interesting quote: "Virus writers are also creating fake profiles of celebrities, real friends or business associates hoping people will link with them. Users can be tricked into linking to the fake profile, which can be loaded with various forms of malicious software." You can read all about it here.

Here's another: "Social media sites generate revenue with targeted advertising, based on personal information. As such, they encourage registered users to provide as much information as possible. With limited government oversight, industry standards or incentives to educate users on security, privacy and protecting your identity, users are exposed to identity theft and fraud." You can read all about it here.

Last quote: "Creating a social media profile on the site of ‘the big players’ is something we all need to do in order to prevent phishers and scammers to don our personality on-line..." You can read all about it here.

Do you see where I am going with this? Maybe you don't. Let me help you: Everyone is not who they appear to be in social media... You need to protect yourselves by claiming your social media identities. Don't put it off until it's too late.

Want to learn a secret? I spent three hours writing a post that in the end I deleted. Instead, I decided that sometimes the best way to get a point across is to put people in other people's shoes. Read those three articles that I selected for you. I selected them for a reason. They say it better in the aggregate than I could ever say it on my own in one sitting. I think you'll learn something very useful today. You may not think you need this reminder, but you do. Trust me? Then go read those other writers. We can talk about 'em and what they had to say later... :-)


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Comment balloon 26 commentsC Tann-Starr • April 12 2009 08:10PM


C- This is something I never really considered until reading these posts. You have to keep your guard up. Thanks for opening my eyes.

Posted by Claude Cross, Charlotte NC Homes For Sale (Homes By Cross, Inc. ) almost 12 years ago

Thanks for the warning.

Posted by Irene Tron almost 12 years ago


Wow ... you are really down on everything today. Isn't there anything GOOD going on out there???

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) almost 12 years ago

O.K. Carolyn, you have scared the crap out of me. I want to run and remove myself from the few networks I am on. And what does this mean "Google yourself regularly and monitor your credit"? They say not to include your grad year from high school or college...done that... or date of birth..I'm pretty sure I've done that..or mention your hometown...done that here on AR. I know you are the voice of reason, so what's your advice??

Posted by Barb Szabo, CRS, E-pro Realtor, Cleveland Ohio Homes (RE/MAX Trinity Brecksville Ohio) almost 12 years ago

Claude, you are welcome. Sometimes we get so busy with the business of social networking we miss the security measures that need to be placed in effect to safeguard our cyber investments.

Irene, you are very welcome.

Richard, there are good things, but this has to be addressed. I'm dealing with an issues behind the scenes right now and people need to understand just because we blog on a platform or socialize on a network we're automatically okay. There are people here who do not have the same agendas we have for the industry and for us as individual people. A criminal can create an AR or FB profile just as easily as a nan-criminal. How many times have you heard people here say they have people working in their offices who say they do not blog and the rest of us are wasting their time. Has it ever dawned on any of you that another member in the same office who doesn't like an acquaintance can cause havoc on-line for that person? If I can wake a few people up to the fact the need to monitor their on-line accounts, then half my job is done.

Barb, you don't remove yourself, you go to settings and you adjust what information is available to be viewed in your profiles and then you watch and monitor all of your accounts. This post is about getting you to protect all of your assets. Social media accounts are networking assets.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

C - It is a jungle out there.  Three great articles; we have to keep in mind at all times that there are many people on the web who do not have our interest at heart.  Thanks for sharing.

Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) almost 12 years ago

We forget because we're in a 'social' setting that there are less than honest folks out there who are only their to exploit others... We would all be wise to monitor our online 'profiles' and to limit the truly personal information we put out for public consumption.

Posted by Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired (Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®) almost 12 years ago

C, this is excellent advice and I have gone back and taken the proper precautions. Thanks to your help!

Posted by Lara O'Keefe (North Texas Home Finders) almost 12 years ago

It seems the more social media becomes mainstream- the bigger the problems we have as a result of being integrated with technology

Posted by Allison Stewart, St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904 (St.Cloud Homes ) almost 12 years ago

C - swell, so now I have to worry about online identity theft, thanks for the heads up!

Posted by Mike Saunders (Lanier Partners) almost 12 years ago

Jennifer, you are very welcome. Google Alerts keep me busy. One must always monitor their on-line reputation. Things can get out of hand if someone steals your profile and starts causing problems.


Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Jesse and Kathy, very true. Sometimes we also think that members in this forum are automatically okay because we see them commenting a lot. That's not true. New profiles should be approached with caution. Especially the ones who never write a blog post because they leave you with very little material to reference and only comments to review. We all know how hard it is to track a person by their comments. I like that CC is by invitation of the members and enjoy getting to know each one of you. 

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Lara, I am glad you found the information useful. You are very welcome, lovely. :-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Allison, I think the shadies are going to get involved in every facet of life they can flip a buck from (LOL). They are very adept at adapting to the next scam. I've seen some very creative stuff out there. Imagine if they crossed over to the good side and ran a real business with all of the zeal and energy they place into their criminal enterprises. I bet that would be amazing! It's a real shame they don't... The economy could use new businesses that create real jobs and provide health benefits. Oh well... we have to do what we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones. Taking control of our on-line profiles is just one step of many that needs to get done.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Big Mike, you are very welcome. I'm helping a couple of my friends with a few take down notices. Seems people are pretending to be them, using their profile pics and everything else, on sites they are not subscribed to. That totally whomps... Imagine having to convince someone in administration on another platform that you are really you while proclaiming, "but that's not me! I didn't open that account." Can you say criminal and civil liability?

This may turn into a link love series (LOL). I've so much to talk about. :-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

So scary!  These articles are very informative and enlightening.  Its unfortunate we have to be so careful, but the scumbags are out there and we need to protect ourselves.  Thanks for the info.

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) almost 12 years ago

Thanks Carolyn. I am definitely going to be changing my settings on twitter, facebook and linkedin TODAY.  Thanks so much for the heads up..

Posted by Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®, Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate almost 12 years ago

Sharon and Rebecca you are both very welcome.


Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

I never thought about signing up on some of these sites for this reason. I just left them alone because I didn't see me using them, looks like I better fix that before someone signs up for me.


Posted by Todd Clark, Principle Broker Oregon (eXp Realty LLC) almost 12 years ago

It boggles my mind that people even do this. Don't they have anything better to do with their precious time here?

Posted by Janice Roosevelt, OICP ABR, ePRO,Ecobroker ( Keller Williams Brandywine Valley ) almost 12 years ago

Todd, it's better for you to have a profile and barely use them, than discover you're in the middle of someone's divorce case because some poor man decides that "his wife" is having "an affair" with the fake "you." (Not kidding: One of my friends got served to go to court behind this type of stupidity. Turned out it was a "criminal cousin" trying to impress women on-line claiming to have a nice job, nice car, etc. Looked similar to him, but not quite the same. (I'm not kidding when I say my e-mails inspire me. I should write a book - LOL)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Janice, I can not speak for what inspires people to act or not to act. There are so many very interesting variables at play. I think it's just a game to most, but to some is is part of a criminal enterprise. We have to protect ourselves against both. That can be difficult at times, but one must do the best they can with what he or she knows...

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

Hi C!  You have been on my mind.  I need to check in with you.  I have been on haul ass for the last two months.  I am happy to be busy but sometimes it is overload.  Balance is something I have a hard time with.  Anyway, thanks for bringing this to our attention.  I even tell people not to have their year of birth on their Facebook profile.  Just giving crooks one more piece of info is no good.  Thanks for watching out for us.

MWA to you

Posted by Audrey June-Forshey, GRI, Gaithersburg, MD (RE/MAX Realty Services) almost 12 years ago

Hello lovely. You are very welcome. I shall be fishing with Lenn and must come visit with you as well. I'll call you tomorrow. :-)

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

C: Thank you for this valuable information. It is just a shame that we can't just have fun and share information and ideas without the ugly and bad people messing it up. Thanks again!

Posted by Sandy Childs, Realtor - Spartanburg, SC (Keller Williams Realty) almost 12 years ago

Sandy C, you are very welcome. It is a crying shame because so many people do enjoy social media and have no idea how bad things can get when the wrong person is let in.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) almost 12 years ago

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