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Bosguy
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A while ago, I went to check my email. Usually, I just click on the email icon and I go directly to my email account. Today, it asked for my password (with no reason given) Fine. Then it automatically went to "Update Profile" where it had my first and last name. The scary part was it also asked for a picture, my gender, and MY FULL BIRTHDATE--month/day/year. There is a way to bypass it, but I couldn't believe that they were asking data that could breach a person's privacy and the security of finances.

 

Has anyone else seen this? How do you notify Google that this policy is extremely dangerous?

 

Boston Bill

Live Your Dreams With Passion And Purpose

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Google knows TOTALLY that this is dangerous ... and ... gathering this kind of info for bundling, analysis, and resale is how they make their money and offer "free" mail service, browsers, etc.

 

I NEVER give out that kind of information. I don't put my birthday on FB, determining that getting "Happy B-day" messages form people I barely know is not worth the security risk. Same is true for phone numbers, real-world address, etc. I never even tell websites to store credit card info for future use. The more info they have on file (see, for example, the latest Target security breach) the more info is at risk.

 

So ... I give absolutely minimal information to ANYONE ... other than airline websites, which require all sorts of info for TSA and international travel security purposes.

 

As far as I'm concerned, no one else NEEDS that info for reasons that serve MY interests, so I never give it out!

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Google knows TOTALLY that this is dangerous ... and ... gathering this kind of info for bundling, analysis, and resale is how they make their money and offer "free" mail service, browsers, etc.

 

I NEVER give out that kind of information. I don't put my birthday on FB, determining that getting "Happy B-day" messages form people I barely know is not worth the security risk. Same is true for phone numbers, real-world address, etc. I never even tell websites to store credit card info for future use. The more info they have on file (see, for example, the latest Target security breach) the more info is at risk.

 

So ... I give absolutely minimal information to ANYONE ... other than airline websites, which require all sorts of info for TSA and international travel security purposes.

 

As far as I'm concerned, no one else NEEDS that info for reasons that serve MY interests, so I never give it out!

 

When signing up originally on Facebook, I didn't think there was a way to opt out of providing your birthday date. I also tried to delete it on Facebook recently, and if I remember correctly, I don't think I was able to.

 

Gman

Gman

 

In brightest day, in blackest night, No evil shall escape my sight. Let those who worship evil's might, Beware my power, The Great Gazoo is always right!!!!

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Gman ... signup options have varied a lot over the years. I just never gave it to them to begin with.

 

And once they have that info, they have no intention of giving it up. At least they're honest about that ... they tell you that you can't delete it, rather than saying you can, and keeping it (and selling it) anyway.

 

This stuff is going to start blowing up in the faces of a LOT of people sooner o later. It's only a matter of time.

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A while ago, I went to check my email. Usually, I just click on the email icon and I go directly to my email account. Today, it asked for my password (with no reason given) Fine. Then it automatically went to "Update Profile" where it had my first and last name. The scary part was it also asked for a picture, my gender, and MY FULL BIRTHDATE--month/day/year. There is a way to bypass it, but I couldn't believe that they were asking data that could breach a person's privacy and the security of finances.

 

Has anyone else seen this? How do you notify Google that this policy is extremely dangerous?

 

Boston Bill

 

When I signed up for my first Yahoo account in the 1990's they asked for the same information. I never uploaded a photo and I provided a bogus birth date.

 

Regarding the password request, when you sign in to GMail (and most other web services) your computer usually provides login credentials that are stored in your browser. The browser "knows" which credentials to provide based on "cookies" the web service sends to your computer requesting those login credentials. Periodically, a web service will request that you confirm those credentials by requesting you to enter your user name and/or password. This is nothing to be alarmed about. The web service is simply confirming the computer that purports to be operated by you is actually operated by you. You can set up most web services, including GMail, to require a password every time you log in. It is a huge pain in the ass, but you can do it.

 

In terms of the information requested to complete your profile, the spectrum of risk acceptance is as broad as the population of people who use Google's services. That's why Google requests the information and provides you with a way to skip providing it. Frankly, I see no greater risk in allowing Google to have my name and birthdate than in allowing my cable company (who is my ISP, the vehicle by which I access the web) to have the same information plus my social security number, address, mother's maiden name, and other identifying information, all of which was required to establish my account when I signed up for service. (The SSN is used when performing a credit check). In addition, the three major credit bureaus have that and much much more. A subsidiary of Experian recently sold consumer data to an identity theft ring posing as a legitimate data mining company. Here's a link to a story about that breach:

 

http://www.informationweek.com/security/risk-management/experian-breach-fallout-id-theft-nightmares-continue/d/d-id/1112058?

 

I find that far more scary than Google asking me to provide a picture and my date of birth which, as FreshFluff pointed out, can be whatever you want it to be.

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