Tips to Ensure Social Media Security for Your Small Business
In the digital marketing world today, nearly every business has a social media page. The social media outlets, while being a great way to engage with customers, come with their own set of security risks. In fact, employees’ own personal social presences can leak into the entire company’s security issues. While some companies may choose to restrict internal access to their business social media sources, others may choose to prohibit employees from associating the business on their personal social pages. Take a look at a few other precautions your business can take to address and avoid the risks that come with social media:
- Create Privacy Policies. The policies you put into place pertaining to social media must be extremely specific. You must make your employees aware of your exact expectations, from them specifically as well as the company as a whole. You will want to outline appropriate and inappropriate social media behaviors, as well as avenues that should be completely avoided.
- Train Personnel. Make sure that any policies and procedures that you put into place are well managed. Managers and IT personnel all need to be on the same page in order to create a uniform security front. They should not only be properly and equally trained, but they should also be able to set security leadership examples and enforce policies. Employees must realize that they represent your company at all times, even when off the clock, and that their behavior can have a direct impact on the company as a whole. This requires a great amount of responsibility for not only the employees, but for your personnel as well as they ensure the implementation of the policies.
- Limit Social Network Access. Social networks are used for a vast amount of reasons, some of which are less than appropriate. Employee associations with social networks that are less-than-appealing can shed a whole new, undesired light on your company and its values. You may want to consider enforcing a no-employment disclosure for your workers; ask them to leave their employment statuses blank on their Facebook and LinkedIn accounts, or whatever other social networks they tend to use. You may also want to ask your employees to use the maximum privacy settings available on the sites, as the default, generic settings leave the networks quite vulnerable.
- Invest in Security Software. Once you ensure that your policies are in place and that your employees are trained on the expected procedures and behaviors, you will also need to upgrade your software with the best anti-virus protection for your business. If needed, invest in consulting or new hardware. Do your best to update security areas in your operating systems and perform regular anti-virus evaluations. These should include evaluations of your policies as well. Ensure that your policies are current with the changing times and they are being enforced by the employees.
Social media use is truly an asset for many businesses. Actually, in the majority of cases, it is a vital necessity for marketing and networking purposes. Though there are security risks present, do not make the mistake of abstaining from all social media in general. As long as you take the necessary safety precautions, there will no reason to restrict your business from the benefits it may gain from partaking in social media.