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6 Security Concerns You Need To Know for Social Media Use

Take these steps now before it is too late

Social media has changed the way business and the world operate.  It is no longer just a tool for “the younger generation.”  People are embracing it for its ease of use, availability and ability to connect easily with family and friends.  Recently I heard about a friend who was planning a trip and was going to use Facebook as an integral part of connecting with others to share events, pictures and more as they happened.

It got me thinking harder on how we have come to accept this technology in our day to day lives.  Truly, social networking has transformed the way the connected masses communicate.

How does this translate to business?

As we live in a socially connected workplace; there is free flow of information between people and their ‘followers.’ Securing Social Media is a hot topic, as social media, like any advanced technology platform, can pose serious risks to an organization’s network, data and reputation.

With the proper security, social networking can be a powerful enabler for change.

  1. Information flows between employees and their online followers; this can pose security risks to the organization’s network, data and users. Now businesses must change and adapt the way they secure their networks and data.
  2. Businesses must take extraordinary care to craft an integrated security strategy that balances employee education with sophisticated network monitoring and data protection practices.
  3. Businesses need a proactive— and powerfully persuasive—communications plan to educate their user community about social media risks, personal and company impacts, and expected behaviors.
  4. Top Down approach- Management should support the communications plan with targeted protections to mitigate the risks of social networking,  a phenomenon that will only continue to gain force.
  5. Beyond the external threat- It’s not just the hackers businesses must worry about. In addition to leaking sensitive information, individual users of social networks can distort information about a company (or its employees) to create public relations disasters.
  6. Business and Technology balance: To safeguard critical data, mitigate data leakage, and control intellectual property, chief information security officers (CISOs) must adopt a two-pronged strategy that leverages the experience and leadership of the business and technology sides of their companies.

With the proper security, social networking can be a powerful enabler for change. However, businesses will stand to benefit only if policies and technologies work in concert to safeguard data and the network.

How is your organization making your security program work in favor of this trend? How are you working on enforcing the social media security policy?

Bindu SundaresanStrategic Security Solutions Lead, AT&T
Bindu is focused on delivering her expertise on security and mobility, security and cloud computing, and how these topics relate to industry verticals like healthcare, retail, financial services and government entities. She is a regular blogger on AT&T’s Networking Exchange blog. | Facebook | @ATTSmallBiz | More from Bindu

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