Why Should Firms Perform Social Media Security Checks?

By Kenna McHugh Comment

Image by knoe.com

Firms should to get up to speed and regulate or investigate the need for their company to check and see if their security cleared staff could leak confidential information. The purpose of the security check is backed by a recent poll that employers have not taken adequate precautions over social media usage.

A total of 500 medium-to-large firms were polled by messaging infrastructure specialist bluesource. Of those polled 75 percent were in favor of using social media and 58 percent did so in a concerted way, with Twitter the most popular format, followed by Facebook, Linkedin and Youtube. Those numbers are an indication that security policies or regulations need to be in place in businesses that use social media.

Ironically, 96 percent of respondents felt their staff’s usage of social media could create potential security or compliance risks, only 33 percent conducted measures such as a security check to discern and manage what their employees were saying over the web. This issue reminds me of the high-profile leak from an actor on the set of the popular TV show Glee. An extra cast member twitted the pivotal plot point of the final show of the season. The producer of the show was not too happy to say the least.

Another example is the recent Tulalip leaked by Microsoft staff, although that was in a much larger scale, uploading an actual web page of a future management tool.

Of course, the Glee TV show example is not similar to the corporate arena, but a supervisor may experience an employee tweeting or sharing a potential winning contract. The competitors may be savvy to these platforms and pick it up to “steal” the contract.

Andrew Mckeeve, chief operating officer at bluescource, commented: “Organizations’ IT departments will need help in planning against and managing social media threats, so businesses’ operations can safely enjoy the benefits.”

Perhaps, you can think of other ways a staff member of a firm could leak secured information via the popular social media.