Thursday, May 26, 2011

Aliases and Imposters on Facebook

Not the Susan Arnout Smith you were looking for?

Facebook users face a problem, the non-uniqueness of given names. Up until recently anyone could create a facebook profile page using whatever name they wanted. The movie catfish shows the case where non-existent people are created for sock-puppetry and fraud. Consider this radio show as Catfish, Chapter 2. This story details another side of the same coin: people maliciously creating believable imposter pages to damage the reputation of real people. The individual targeted for identity forgery was novelist Susan Arnout Smith. At the end the program, the host mentions that their program was successful in reaching a customer service department at facebook, who say that more safety checks are in place now to properly identify potential fraud. This radio show can get results where mere mortals cannot, very much in the style of getting results only after shining the bright light media scrutiny.

Audio is cached here:

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