Online personality quizzes are fascinating. How else would we find out which Disney princess our cleaning habits are most like? Or exactly what percent evil our periods are? Or which possible Illuminati member we are? Or how similar to this taco we feel today? The list (and amount of time spent clicking) goes on. And on. But maybe we should all rethink how often we’re clicking around on these quizzes.
According to one man who poked around Buzzfeed’s code, the site is collecting and retaining all your clicks. And while this may be harmless when answering questions like “Which of these dogs speaks to you?” some Buzzfeed quizzes ask users where they live, their age, their sexual orientation and whether you’ve linked your Buzzfeed account to Facebook. And it’s not just Buzzfeed doing this. Many online quiz sites are mining users’ responses for data.
Using this data, it’s super easy to piece together a picture of each user and (in a best case scenario) target precise ads. In a spookier picture, a company knows exactly who you are, your likes and dislikes, your location, your age, your income, your personal history, your friends and anything you’ve told them.
So, if this is all a little too spooky and 1984 for you, the best method to protecting your sensitive information is keeping it on the DL. And maybe rethink whether or not you really need to know how much of a Disney karaoke expert you are if the quiz asks your age.
Will you stop taking online quizzes? Let us know @BritandCo!
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