We know…you’ve seen this title a thousand times. But before you let out a moan and decide to read Buzzfeed instead, let us assure you that this is one post you will NOT regret reading. The truth is, your social accounts may not be as secure as you believe, and not taking the time to defend them from hackers (or cyber-jerks, as we like to call them) could cause you quite a few problems in the future.
So how can I protect my social?
Before the hysteria rises, there are a few simple steps you can take to make your social accounts a little more secure; so take a deep breath, grab a cuppa, and get ready to make some notes.
The Holy Grail aka Your Password
We all know about passwords and how we should all be striving to use more than 8 characters, as well as random numbers and capitals, but do you really know how feeble your passwords might still be? You might have stumped your flat-mate but would it baffle someone with a little more expertise? Not necessarily. Make use of a password manager, such as LastPass to generate some harder-to-crack passwords; it’s the first and most basic step when it comes to security.
Link ’em up
Two-step authentication can be an enormous help in securing your social accounts. This process usually involves linking your accounts with a separate device such as your phone. You can arrange for a code to be texted to your mobile to be entered into any social accounts during the login process. This still might not stop the hackers completely (the sneaky devils) but it will make it a LOT harder. Having your social connected to your mobile also means that you can use your phone to recover your social account if the worst case scenario does come true.
(But don’t link everything)
However, too much connectivity can actually make things worse. First and foremost, you should consider using a separate email address for your social channels. As many people tend to use the same passwords for numerous accounts (try not to look too guilty), linking your all-important email address to your profile could give the intruder it’s next target. Furthermore, a little bit of common-sense can go a long way to building up your social defence. Don’t make the answers to your security questions too obvious, and make sure the answers aren’t accessible through a brief scroll of your facebook timeline.
Yeah, you got this
So now that you’re a little more clued up and reassured, it’s time to talk about how this can REALLY go wrong. When it comes to agencies who manage several clients, disaster for one social account could spell super-disaster for many, and furthermore, any mishaps could be harder to spot or catch-quickly.
Get ready for some cold hard facts
With the The Office for National Statistics estimating 5.6 million fraud and computer misuse crimes in the 12 months up to the end of June 2016, it’s clearly a common and ever-looming issue. Try as we might, there will almost always be a way for someone to break into your social account, but it’s important to put up a good fight.
But why would anyone be so mean?
Believe it or not, the most common motive for hacking is actually thought to be just for fun. I know what you’re thinking…why couldn’t they just buy a pogo stick or something. It can be pretty embarrassing when your social accounts are sending some very ‘out-of-character’ tweets such as when Paypal’s twitter was compromised by an angry customer.
However, the problem can also become a lot more extreme if the intruder is interested in seeking information or forcing your pages to share malicious links. Your problem could go from bad to worse in a matter of minutes with all of your accounts in danger, and that’s including your bank account. You’re also likely to encounter a few miffed friends with their brand new computer viruses.
I need a Hero
Let’s talk about agencies for a minute here…when something goes wrong for you it’s a problem x100. You aren’t just responsible for your social channels but for the accounts of every single client you have! While any mishaps may not be as extreme as an intruder in your accounts, with the ContentCal platform, our scheduling and planning social content calendar, any errors or inappropriate content will instantly be obvious with increased visibility across all clients and all channels. In case of emergencies ContentCal has a ’pause all content’ button. This feature will completely halt all posts from being sent into the social-sphere. This can be great in situations where your planned content might not be appropriate due to a news flash about current events, or if you’ve simply just noticed some mistakes you need to correct.
What extra steps do you take to make your social accounts a little more protected? We’d love to hear your tips, so send us a tweet using the handle @Contentcal_io