The Dark Side of Social Media

Which of the following statements are true?

  • 845 million people actively use Facebook.
  • Over 50% of the population in North American uses Facebook.
  • Facebook accounts for 1 out of every 5 pageviews on the internet worldwide.
  • There are 2.7 billion likes every single day on Facebook.
  • Facebook has 425 million mobile users.
  • Facebook is a favorite target for cybercriminals.

If you said that they all were true, you’re right. Obviously Facebook and other social media networking sites are a boon for businesses, an opportunity to reach enormous amounts of potential customers. But the last statement is also true. Facebook and other social media sites hold stores of valuable information, and draw cybercriminals like pirates to buried treasure.

This particular type of crime is on the rise. Security research labs report a 20 to 40 percent increase in malware targeting social networking sites. Just this January, a campaign disguised as a friend request attacked Facebook users, who not only didn’t get a new friend, but ended up connecting to a site hosting a malicious JavaScript.

Right about now, you may be wondering why a network support provider is blogging about friends and social media sites. But Facebook and the other sites aren’t just about friendship. Just one look at the numbers shows you the impact they can have on your business. The negative impact can also be huge. The number one cause of data breaches is malicious attacks. Not stolen laptops or accidental sharing, but attacks that arrive via the Internet and more and more often through social media. And social media has a wide range. Your business may have a page. You employees may access Facebook on breaks. They may use company laptops off hours.

But don’t write off social media—it’s too valuable. Instead, we suggest using a two-fold security strategy: education and technology… First, educate your employees. Make sure they use strong passwords and don’t click on links that seem even slightly suspicious. If you know of a particular threat, make sure everyone at your company knows about it. And for the technological half of your security, call us at NCC Data, the leading provider of IT services in the Dallas Fort Worth Area. We stay up-to-date with the newest security solutions and monitor the latest threats, so you don’t have to. You can take advantage of the opportunities that social media offers, knowing that NCC Data, your network support provider, is protecting you from the dark side.

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