The only way you can expect to protect your online data is to either run your own social network site out of your house on your own hardware with uber-secure passwords, or don't use social networks. I choose the latter. My personal information is far too valuable to me to simply give away for free to some faceless corporation to exploit with only it's own interests in mind. What people forget, is that the operator of these social network servers have complete admin access to all user account information public and "private". No thanks. I never jumped on that bandwagon. This is one of those cases where people get what they pay for.
If I may ask, do you have any idea how long did this fake person existed on Facebook pretending like you?
And since you had noticed it and notified that to Facebook, how long did it take for Facebook to take down the fake account?
An unknown user hacked my facebook account and was talking to my friends asking for ransom money. I was able to post on my wall that my account was hacked, and not to respond. I was also able to go into the account settings and change my password. It was surreal watching someone chatting as if they were me, and there was nothing I could do, until they logged out and the account settings were updated. I also had to refriend several folks that my hacker had unfriended, since they called him/her on the fact that it clearly wasn't me. My advice is to make your password very secure, and change it often.
The removal of the messages is both disturbing and, sadly, not terribly surprising.
I think there's a natural tendency to assume that governments and old-guard corporations can't be trusted, but new Internet companies can. Wealth, power and control are prime motivators for misdeeds in government and old companies. The people in new Internet companies are really no different and are just as likely to succumb to those temptations.
The other thing that is easy to forget is that Facebook and similar companies don't really have anything to stop them from deleting or even altering users' data because it's really not "users'" data. It pretty much belongs to FB and they have a lot of legal leeyway in what they do with it.
If you don't pay for a service and have a service level contract with the provider, then all you are to them is a source of revenue that they can derive from the data you put onto their site. If it is not obvious how a company makes money out of giving a free service then it is because they are selling what you gave them for free. Currently this is through focussed advertising - but is that the limit to what they can do with your data?
Does FB really need you real date of birth, and all of the other data that "prove" who you are in other contexts eg when opening a bank account?
[For that matter do you need to know what everyone you have ever met have eaten for lunch? ;) ]
Thanks, resistion. When a company with power thinks that they can get away with such a practice as "erasing" what people said about the company on a "social" network site, I think they went too far.
After all, Facebook is "a social network," and if the social network giant can't take the heat on the social playground they have created, there is nothing "social" about Facebook.