Cyber Security Blog

Hacked
Melissa Goldstein ~ Owner/CEO: One Part Social
Guest Blog Post:
“How Can You Keep Your Social Media Sites Safe From Hackers”

Our private information is everywhere! We’re living in a world where tweeting what you had for breakfast to posting your daily adventures on Instagram is the norm. Social media is making it easier to communicate every day happenings with your friends and family around the globe. And for businesses, social platforms offer a great opportunity to foster relationships with their customers.

Unfortunately, though this opportunity comes with a cost. Online account hacking is on the rise, and it affected millions of people in 2018 alone. Social platforms collect tons of personal data, namely, emails, phone numbers, and birth dates. Add to that, the shared personal details in tweets and posts such as your location and employment and family information, and that leaves everyone vulnerable to data breaches and hackers.

However, the good news is if you’re using social accounts for either personal or business intentions, these three simple steps will increase the security of your online activity and leave you less vulnerable to cyber-crimes:

  1. Be more selective with third-party applications.
  2. Create unique, strong passwords.
  3. Enable two-factor authentication.

Be selective with third-party applications.

As small business owners, automating your processes with third-party applications is a big time saver. It’s important to choose wisely, though. These guidelines can help:

  • Research apps and the developers that created them before downloading to see if they have any past data breaches.
  • Stick to reputable app stores like Google and Apple since they’ve already done the security research on their software.
  • Read the app reviews to see if consumers experienced issues in the past.
  • Research apps to see if they put customer trust and satisfaction high on their priority list? Find out if they’ve built a reputable brand?

Create strong passwords.

According to a Statista.com, 22% of social media accounts have been hacked. To avoid being another statistic, here are two best practices when it comes to creating passwords.

  • Never use the same password twice.
  • Don’t include any personal information in your password. Birth dates and favorite pets don’t make secure passwords.

A hacker can easily go to your Facebook page, learn your birth date or check out your post from National Pet Day about why Mr. Whiskers is the coolest cat around.

Create unique and strong passwords and then write them down in a safe place. Or better yet, use an online password generator or password management tool to manage all of your passwords.

Enable two-factor authentication.

Two-factor authentication means confirming your identity in two different ways. Facebook recently implemented its two-factor authentication system after the last data breach.

For example, let’s say you’re logging on to Facebook from a different device for the first time, Facebook recognizes this. After you submit your username and password, Facebook will ask you to confirm your identity through a confirmation code sent to your phone or email.

Though it might be annoying to manage the two-factor authentication every time, it’s another powerful way to keep your social sites more secure.

The Round-Up

 “There can be no social media marketing without cybersecurity training because hackers have taken over that spot with social engineering,” offers the CEO of Cyber Security Consulting.

All online activity can put your data at risk, but there are ways to take precautions to minimize security breaches. Before you share another post on social media, be sure to follow these simple, best practices to keep your accounts safe:

  • Look for third-party applications that have a high reputation and value consumer trust.
  • Be selective and random about your passwords.
  • Always opt for two-factor authentication.

If you found this article helpful, please pass it on or share it on your social sites.

Melissa Goldstein  

Owner/One Part Social

As a former entertainment news writer, social media and branding strategist, Melissa brings a 20-year track record in small business consulting. She holds a best-in-class Hootsuite Certified designation in online content marketing and has a partnership with the Rutgers Small Business Development Center as a resource to help educate entrepreneurs on all things social media.

Whether crafting a 280-character tweet or blogging for a leading Forbes and Fox Business Network commentator, she gives clout to service industry start-ups and seasoned veterans. Her client roster spans locally-based enterprises in the health and wellness, financial advisement, and executive leadership industries. She loves helping organizations grow and holds local workshops to educate business owners on marketing best practices.

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