Social networking is getting more dangerous for users. And this group of experts says businesses aren’t taking enough action to protect their computers and networks.
Security threats from social networking sites are taken too lightly by businesses, according to a recent survey from security firm Sophos.
The threats are on the rise — 40% of users reported being hit by malware from a social networking site last year, nearly double the 21% that said the same thing in 2009. Also, phishing scams were reported by 43% of social networking users.
Companies have noticed, too — 59% of IT managers said they were concerned user behavior could endanger corporate security. And 57% think their employees may be sharing too much information online.
However, that isn’t reflected in employers’ policies. More than half of companies allow unrestricted access to Facebook and other sites. And less than 25% completely block those sites.
One reason could be companies’ fear of making employees disgruntled by being too strict regarding web use. Many IT managers and other experts argue that can do more harm than good.
One step IT should take: Train users on how to be careful on Facebook and other social networking sites. You can start by passing on these Facebook security tips:
- Be careful who you trust. Don’t friend users you don’t know, and be suspicious of certain messages from people you do know — scams are often conducted by stealing log-in info or using malware to get access to people’s contacts.
- Tweak settings for maximum privacy. A guide to Facebook’s privacy settings is available here.
- Delete addresses, phone numbers other personal info entirely. A new Facebook feature could allow rogue applications to access that data.