Every day internet users find themselves creating personal accounts for many different activities on the internet. Whether it’s shopping, commenting, logging into a newly downloaded app, or even playing an RPG game online, most times the website requires the user to create an account to access services.

Why? There are many reasons for this. Service providers might choose to have you sign in with a social media: to achieve a more personalized experience for the user; to provide the user with offers, special opportunities, and even coupons depending on the user’s preferences; to create a mailing list to contact one-time buyers; to guarantee a longer dependency to social media. The reasons are plenty, but it all comes down to this: If you want to buy, vine, comment, or manage a fantasy football team, you’ll probably have to sign-up.

safe log in

This process can feel overwhelming, because let’s face it, who can (and wants to) keep track of 30 or even more different accounts? To rid users of this burden, many social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, have created apps that allow you to use the social media account of your choice to create a permission process that will link your new account with your social media log in information. This means, you no longer have to remember each password, you only need to know your social media password. The trend has created a competition between the leading social media providers to be the log in key of your choice (Facebook is currently in the lead with 51%, Google+ is the runner-up with 26% of log ins). However, the advantage usually comes with a price. When logging in with a social media, the user is many times agreeing to allow the service provider to “write, post, or tweet” on their behalf. Although some social media have now given control to the user over which permissions (read or write) he or she wants to allow the service provider to use, the question still arises:

Is it safe to log in with my Facebook account?

Here is a list of pros and cons that might help you make a decision about whether it is convenient for you or not to use your social media to create and log in to other accounts.

PROS

  • It is faster and easier to log in with a social media account.
  • Signing up with social media is convenient for you. It removes the necessity of having to remember a new account username and password.
  • It personalizes your experience in the webpage. The service provider can access some information about you. For example your likes or location (if your security setting allows it).
  • Linking your accounts can bring more audience to you as well. If your comment interests someone, they will be able to learn more about the things you post about on social media.

CONS

  • You might not want to have all your accounts connected. Some users prefer to have separations between their accounts to increase security and privacy.
  • If you haven’t reviewed the permissions, the service provider might post on your behalf.
  • Not everyone has social media. It might not seem true, but not everyone is on Facebook.
  • Although you won’t need to remember another username and password, if you are purchasing something, you still need to input your billing and shipping information.
  • If you rely on a third party (Facebook, Google+, etc.) to create on account, there’s a chance that if these fail, your new account will fail to.
  • Security weakens with every time you log in with you social media credentials. This means that if your social media account is hacked, the access to all the accounts linked may be compromised as well.