In the day to day world, we all are using social media platforms as a main part of our lives. It has unknowingly become a habit of checking all the notifications in social media once we get a few minutes break out of our work. It is estimated that these social platform users spend nearly 2hours and 24 minutes per day on their social media.
These platforms make us feel that we are more connected with each other than ever before. And far beyond that, these platforms are there to keep in touch with every move we do there, and provide us with better suggestions.
The main purpose of being on social media is to build up connections with people and keep in touch with the people we are already connected with. So everyone should expect higher privacy within the social platforms because it contains very sensitive data of the individuals.
But we all know that these social networking platforms have collaborated with many organizations and they have started to provide some of our personal information for commercial purposes.
Apart from that, there is a higher risk of your private information being public. This may lead to some serious matters like terrorism issues, political issues, and most importantly privacy issues. So let’s nutshell about some digital security issues that we may have to undergo while using social networking platforms.
- UNATTENDED OR IDLE ACCOUNTS
It is good to have a presence in social media as it maintains your image all the time. But if the user cannot update it for a longer period of time, the account is under higher risk. Because the hackers may easily find idle accounts and try to hack those accounts and do some illegal business.
- PHISHING ATTACKS AND SCAMS
‘Phishing’ is one of the fraudulent attempts to gather some sensitive information from their users. In this cybercrime, the victims are most commonly targeted by emails, WhatsApp or text messages, and phone calls. These hackers may sometimes be able to access even the banking and credit card details.
These phishing conversations can be easily identified if we carefully observe them.
- The admins may make you feel a sense of urgency, which makes you think that you must grab the chances.
- Normally these emails contain eye-catching pictures and some attention-grabbing taglines.
- There can be some misspelled hyperlinks, which are slightly different from some most famous websites. The user may not identify the difference in the first instance itself.
It is estimated that the number of phishing attacks in the first quarter of 2019 is above 129.9(Kaspersky reports).
- IMPOSTER ACCOUNTS
This is what we simply call ‘fake accounts’ in day to day life. Not only they can create a fake profile using all your information, but they can also try to connect with your business partners and colleagues by pretending to be you. As examples in the past we can clearly observe that these kinds of fake profiles can impact a country’s flow on a larger scale. The best examples reported are,
- Russia’s interference in the 2016 US election
- Chinese social media accounts
- Fake social media accounts of homeland security
- THIRD-PARTY APPS
A third-party app is an application that is provided to some high-security criteria as the native apps (first-party) As a result downloading these apps may infect your device with certain malware. Most of the time, they sell some highly=expensive apps for a much cheaper price, but the user has to bargain for it. This bargaining can lead to leakage of your privacy.
- MALWARE ATTACKS AND HACKS
Malware or malicious software is used to define a threat, which can cause serious damages to your device or the entire network. The researches have proved that the number of malware attacks is sophisticated drastically every year. The main reasons are that cybercriminals design these codes very carefully which makes the user more strenuous to detect. These malware attacks can be categorized into many ways such as Adware, Rootkit, spyware, Trojan, and so on. It is estimated that there were around 9.9 billion malware attacks in 2019.
Other than them there are hundreds of digital security issues that can be experienced when going on with social platforms. Under each case, there can be hundreds of recorded cases and thousands of unrecorded cases. To obtain the maximum security on social networks you can stick to some guidelines as follows.
If you are an individual
- You can manage your social media settings. You can restrict any outsiders from viewing and posting on your profile.
- You should use strong passwords. The password should not be a common word that is related to you. This can be guessed by anyone.
- Regularly update your software. This will prevent your device from unwanted terminations. And keeping outdated software may provide a possibility to the cybercriminals as it will provide them a loophole.
- You have to keep updated on major security breaches. At least you should have an idea within you what has gone wrong there.
- You should not open any suspicious content which is sent to you even from your most known contacts.
As an organization, you can implement some regulations and ensure digital security.
- Firstly, you have to create a specific social media policy with the guidance of some legal authorities as well as the company experts. So it provides everyone the limitations which they should and should not be doing. You can include brand guidelines, copyright, and confidentiality guidelines there.
- You may limit your staff from social media access. This will secure you from the threats which can come inside the organization itself.
- Training the staff about social security is much more essential nowadays. In addition, the firm can appoint someone in charge and perform a regular audit just to make sure that everything is working accordingly.
- As a firm, you can allocate a certain amount from your budget to invest in security technologies. Since hackers are always coming up with new plans of action, you may not be able to identify those themselves. But if you handed over it to some reputed firms, they might easily identify the threat and get some safety precautions.
Following the above self-guidelines, you can place yourself as a person who has a lesser chance of getting caught in a cybercrime. But what is still important is to keep updated and touched with everything that happens around you.