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Yes, Malware is Bad. But Your Biggest Security Threat May Come From Your Social Media Accounts.

Business.com / Security / Last Modified: September 13, 2017
Photo credit: Mikhail Grachikov/Shutterstock

While social media is arguably one of the strongest and best vessels for content distribution nowadays, equally if not more important, is the security of that network. Here are four strategies to maintain security with your social media networks.

It can't be denied how beneficial social media has been to businesses. It's made the entire process of marketing and customer engagement simpler and far more effective. However, like all things, it doesn't come without its fair share of risks.

Businesses already know how important security and protection is in today's digital world. However, they often leave out social media, not realizing how porous it can be when it comes to hacks and breaches. There are several ways in which things can go wrong.

For instance, think of where and with whom your employees are sharing their blogs and tweets. After all, social media is a public forum and your employees are going to be posting on it on a regular basis. Your company data is being made public. If the wrong data gets into the wrong hands, you will end up with a range of problems to deal with.

Social media networks are like a pot of honey to hackers because they offer several lucrative opportunities. First, there's a large user base that can be exploited, and the trust level within the social media environment is relatively higher. Because of this trust level, most users would unwittingly open invitations or sign up for third-party apps, thereby giving away their private information.

So, what can you do to protect your employees and your business? Here are four suggestions.

Make sure everything stays updated

Make sure you update your applications on a regular basis. This could include your antivirus program, social media plugins, browsers and so on. If you have a BYOD policy in your firm, educate employees about what can happen if they don't take security seriously enough. Hold them accountable for security lapses. Have a robust social media security policy in place that mandates updates for employee-owned devices.

Create a secure network

Use solutions that are specific to your operations. The objective here should be to leverage a solution that can offer multilayer security so you are kept secure from the outside and the inside. For example, Cisco's SA 500 series of security appliances use a firewall in combination with a range of security solutions and present it as one compact solution.

Another way to boost network security is by employing IPS software. This software can identify and block network connections that are counterproductive to workplace-related duties. This could include peer-to-peer and instant messaging connections. IPS can block hackers even if your firewall fails to do so.

Use a monitoring solution

Employ a risk-monitoring solution to keep an eye on all of your channels, including social media. Risk-monitoring solutions keep an eye out for scams, fraudulent accounts and phishing links. They can be automated, plus they offer capabilities according to the scale of your business.

Train humans

Finally, make sure your employees are trained on how to operate social media with security as a priority. At the end of the day, the weakest link is the employee. Employees are humans, and humans make mistakes. Make security training a core part of your workforce training.

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