Facebook makes it easy for people to find you with your maiden name, and yet have your maiden name remain private. I felt trapped online that I couldn’t use my real full name because of stalkers, death threats, and how my children’s credit card application security question is “What is your mother’s maiden name?” Well, that aside, I still wanted certain connections from high school to be able to find me, so I asked my sister in law who wasn’t carrying around her maiden name online, how she handles it. She let me know how Facebook has the option to “tag” your name without it being actually placed on your profile for all to see. This means that if someone looked her up by her maiden name, she would still come up. This sounded like it would be the exactly what I needed. Privacy to those who don’t know me by my real name, and able to be found by those that do.
If you would like to set your maiden name private but able to be found in searches, go to “Account”, then “Account Settings”. Next click on “Change” by your name. You see will see the following: “Alternate name (optional): Let friends search for you using a different name, like a nickname or maiden name.” There is then a blank, and under that you will see, “Include this name on my profile.” Be sure that, that remains unchecked, so you still have the privacy you so desire.
This is a great compromise for those who are concerned about their children’s credit card security, and identity thief online. Also great for those who use Facebook just for games, but want the rare few family members to be able to find them. Example of what I mean, let’s say your name is Nicole, but you go by Nikki online. You can set yourself as Nikki for the public, and Nicole for the private search, same applies with last names. Nikki Jones, (public) Nicole Smith (Private). I really love this because not only does this feature protect me, my family, but also my siblings children as well. I realize not everyone may wish to do this, or even realize how much of a security issue this could end up being. Hopefully as time passes credit card companies will remove “What is your mother’s maiden name” question from credit card applications, and it will no longer be a security issue for all of us.
I have no problem with women who carry about their maiden names online, I’m just overly concerned with the many people that could be effected because of it. Social Media can be fun, and now, it can also be safe.