DETROIT (CBS Detroit) — It might seem harmless, but the newest Facebook meme might actually be damaging to your online life.

This week, the trend of listing “10 Concerts I’ve Been To, One is a Lie” gained popularity and seemed innocent enough, but it could reveal something that is meant to be kept a secret — the answer to a security question.

Many websites, including banking and financial websites, require not only a username and password, but several security questions just in case the account becomes compromised. A common question among those being “What’s the first concert you attended?”

Bill Kowalski, principal and director of operations for Farmington Hills-based Rehmann Corporate Investigative Services, said that dialing back and really thinking about what you share on social media can help prevent becoming a victim of such an online attack.

“People don’t care what you’re doing every minute of the day and where you’re going and when you’re home alone and things like that — it’s a matter of education,” Kowalski said.

Someone could figure out the answer to the question just by looking at a Facebook post, granted it’s a public post.

“What you’re giving all of these accounts, whether it’s an email account or social media, you’re giving them permission to use your photos, to have your email on record for forever if they want to use it,” Kowalski said. “People have given away a lot of their own security.”

Kowalski said that social media outlets are a little bit behind on security because they’re “in the business of connectivity and publicity and getting things out there.”

“Their interest in telling people how to remain secure and how to be more secretive is a little less than the financial institutions and the healthcare institutions,” Kowalski said.

Kowalski says the biggest targets of identity theft now are children under the age of 16. He recommends that parents be aware of what their children do online.

“The hackers, the thieves, know that they have good credit, they haven’t done anything yet and usually if you steal their identity you get a credit card and they don’t find out about it until they apply for their first credit card,” Kowalski said.


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