In August, the social media platform Twitter released a statement confirming the breach that allowed attackers access to the contact details of over 5 million users’ accounts. At SensCy, we understand how important social media has become for small and medium-sized businesses. From sharing and selling products to conducting marketing campaigns, social media is now part of every company’s tool box. Today, we wanted to bring awareness to some threats around social media and share some basic recommendations on how to manage your social media channels.
Why should you secure your social media account?
As a small business owner or employee, social media can bring your company many benefits. However, it has become the primary target for hackers to gain access to your most valuable assets, your data. According to Security Magazine, around 30 percent of data breaches target social media platforms. Using various basic or elaborate methods based on their target, hackers use the information they find publicly on social media business accounts to perform the first round of reconnaissance to gather information. This information is then used against your company by hackers in social engineering attacks. For more information, please review our blog on Social Engineering. Social media is also a hacker’s favorite to impersonate other companies (or even individuals associated with your company) to send messages that may contain malware that can steal your personal information.
What could happen if your account is compromised:
Here are the most common risks for your business with social media use:
- Loss of reputation – you are a successful business owner if you can build a strong reputation. Consumer opinions can spread rapidly on social media. A data leak of your personal information or an account taken over by a hacker posting false information can result in negative reviews and loss of clientele.
- Data theft and loss of intellectual property – hackers are looking to steal your sensitive data. Whether it is your employees’ information, intellectual property, or your client’s personal information, it’s all valuable to hackers. In any event, data theft and leaks can lead to severe financial losses.
- Potential compliance violations – if you do not have a set of policies to manage your business accounts on social media, your company could be exposing information violating regulatory requirements and privacy laws. With the rise of data breaches, many industries have increased their privacy requirement following regulations, including HIPAA and CCPA. Any business with an online presence should be aware of those regulations.
How to secure your social media accounts.
At SensCy, we believe a proactive approach can go a long way towards combating cybercrime. Here are some of our recommendations to protect your social media accounts:
- Enable multi-factor authentication on your business account on social media.
- Implement a password policy. One of the centerpieces of good cyber hygiene for your company is implementing a password policy enforcing complex passwords (over 8 characters and including special characters, !@#$, and numbers. Also, require a password change every 90 days.
- Be wary of who you connect with. You might be conscious about your security online, but not everyone in your network is as vigilant. Someone in your network may knowingly or unknowingly share a malicious link and put your clients, employees, and business at risk. There are plenty of bad threat actors online. The more connections you have, the higher the chance of a bad actor slipping into your online network.
- Keep an eye on your brand name and logo. If you have a business account online, threat actors can easily use publicly available logos to create fake pages to scam your employees and customers. Make sure to raise awareness of such behaviors with your employees and report any fake accounts or pages.
- Train your employees on social media policy and phishing. Regular awareness and phishing training is the best way to keep your employees updated with new threats and trends on social media and to change your cybersecurity culture within your organization.
For any additional information or questions, please contact SensCy at firstname.lastname@example.org.