Social Media Security Risks for Businesses

The first security risk that social media poses for your business is being ignorant that there are risks. Since you’re reading this post, you’re probably acutely aware that taking a wrong step in social media could harm your company. So you’re a step ahead of those who jumped in blindly and didn’t prepare for the consequences.

This Fast Company blog post outlines the five biggest social media risks for businesses (the first being ignorance). The other four are:

  • Not creating policies and procedures to protect the company
  • Not training employees on these policies and procedures
  • Not tying in social media policies with information security policies and other business policies
  • Not monitoring employees’ social media activities to ensure they are respecting said policies

I like this list because the risks listed aren’t “employees exposing your system by clicking malevolent links” or other threats–the biggest risks are not doing anything to protect your company from these threats if they occur.

But, if you’re into that sort of thing, here are some specific threats that could damage your company. There are two main types of social media risks: reputational and operational.

Risks to reputation include employees exposing information that’s not meant for public consumption, writing or saying something that’s against federal regulations or conducting themselves in a harrassing/offensive manner online.

Risks to operations include deceptive links that launch malware attacks (think of all the bad “See photos of bin Laden’s body” links that were floating around Facebook shortly after his death) or targeted spear phishing attacks that may compromise your, or your clients’, information.

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