Social Media Security – Some Common Threats

In the past few years, social media has become a phenomenon. The power of social media has been so impactful that it has completely revolutionised the way the human species communicated.

According to the 2017 Sensis Social Media Report, around 8 in 10 Australians use social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and so on. If history is any indication, the number of users will continue to increase.

With hundreds of millions of people on these platforms, they can prove to be great security risks.

As an enterprise, social media is not just about liking and befriending, it can have far-reaching consequences.

Here are some social media security threats you need to watch out for:

Mobile Phone Apps

One of the major factors that has fuelled the massive growth of social media is the mobile phone technology.

Employees’ mobile phones can contain sensitive information about the company. When a user downloads an app, he/she gives increased access to their mobile phones.

A malicious mobile app can easily get hold of that sensitive data and use it for mischievous purposes.

Social Engineering

Social engineering has been around before the computers were invented. However, with the rise of the internet, it has become a very effective tactic.

Social media has made personal information sharing quite easy. What’s more, people trust these platforms more than they should.

For instance, an employee’s new Facebook friend can win his/her trust and get critical inside information about his/her company.

Human Error

Human error is a major threat on social media platforms. From accidental tweets to clicks on phishing links, human error on social media can bring about massive reputational damage.

Employees must be trained to be careful when accessing social media from company’s profile.

Phishing Scams

Phishing scams are messages that seem to come from a legitimate authority, but have a malicious intent.

Recently, there was a phishing attack on Facebook, named Fake Friend. What it did was that it sent a message telling people that their friends had mentioned them in a comment. As the user clicked that link, it would download a Google Chrome extension with malicious intent.

Weak Privacy


Having weak privacy settings will mean that your social channel will be vulnerable to attacks. From sending fraudulent posts to marring your channel’s appearance, hackers can do some real damage is privacy is not taken care of.

Most social media platforms have a comprehensive privacy settings’ option. You should implement a strong privacy policy.

With a team of social media security specialists, Lean Security provides web service and mobile application security testing. Our goal is to make online world a better place. Visit our website for a free web application security health check.