The popularity of Social Media has drastically increased in the past few years, so much that “Facebooking” has become an actual verb! Social Media not only enjoys this position of fame but has brought about a revolution in how people communicate. It has become a powerful tool in bringing people together and making the world smaller. However, with great power comes great responsibility and this is exactly where Social Media fails us. Leading web security experts have pointed out the threats of using Social Media and categorize these platforms as high-risk groups.
If you are still wondering how you are making yourself vulnerable, here are a few threats posed by Social Media:
1- Identity Theft
We are aware that there are some who love to overshare on their social media accounts, but have you considered that almost all platforms collect at least basic data even from the most reclusive ones? You may think that setting up high privacy levels could be the way to ward off identity theft fears, but even that has its loopholes. Thus, extracting basic details like email ID, date of birth, etc. is enough to get the trouble brewing.
2- Social Engineering Attacks
Targeted social engineering attacks are carried out with the purpose of stealing money or classified information. Attackers may create a fake account in your name and target your friends and family by slowly building their trust in your fake ID. In due time, they may gain leverage and exploit your near and dear ones to steal from them.
3- Fake Celebrity Accounts
Everyone wants a taste of fame, so who is stopping you from sending a friend request to your favorite celebrity? But stop right there! Because this move could actually make you vulnerable to a preying hacker! Hackers are known for misusing a celebrity name to attract a large army of followers, who later end up becoming victims of their cyber-attack.
4- Leakage of Confidential Information
The entire Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scam was splashed over the newspaper, and that itself is an eye-opener in itself. Often, it is possible that confidential information that you store on such social media platforms can be sold by individuals or companies to anybody who is willing to purchase it. Thus, even your most sensitive information could be up for scrutiny, and you may be unaware of it!
While we often laugh off the dramatic virtual friends who practically live their life on social media, it may be highlighted that posting personal details (and that also too much of it) can make you susceptible. It could be an innocent post wishing your mother a happy birthday, or a post informing your friends that you are going to be out of town, or a frustrated comment about how your firewall won’t get installed. All information of this nature could offer leads to a hacker to hack into your account.