Security In Social Networking

1899 Words 8 Pages
Security in Social Networking Social media is a phenomenon that has taken the world by storm. In a study conducted by Edison Research, in 2008 24% of Americans had some sort of social media presence. Today, in 2016, it is estimated that 78% of Americans have social media accounts, a 54% increase in just 8 years! With the large increase in social media connectivity and presence today, security has become a huge issue. So many people connected and much of their information is just out there. During this time, I plan on discussing the benefits of social networks, the potential problems they face such as abuse, threats, vulnerability and risk and finally security defenses and precautions one can take to keep themselves safe online. To do this …show more content…
Because of its large user base, social media is a huge target for cyber-attacks. Pages sometimes post links to fake web sites that will show up on social media user’s feeds. Clicking those links will redirect users to the attacker’s page where they ask for personal information such as login credentials, addresses, or bank account information. This technique is known as phishing and although most users are aware of the attacker’s scheme, even if one every few hundred thousand users fall for this, it is still a significant amount of compromised accounts. Phishing can result in harm to the user’s account as well as friends and anyone who is subscribed to their page. Once attackers gain access to that user’s account they can then spread the phishing link on that user’s page which will in turn show up on that user’s friend’s feed starting the cycle all over again. So now even a savvier person might see the post is from a friend and let their guard down. Phishing and other attacks quite often make use of click bait. Click bait is exactly what it seems, an enticing title that gets user’s attention and usually gets them to click on the link. Another potential cyber-attack is malware which can vary in forms which include Trojan horses, spyware, adware, viruses and more. Usually attackers disguise these forms of malware with promises of things users would want, or in the form of click bait. Some examples of click bait include: “Watch TV shows free!”, “photoshop free, click here to download” or “celebrity actress said these 10 things, you won’t believe number 3!”. Usually these are things that users themselves are interested in because of past searches or purchases. Often times even when I use Facebook, after purchasing an item on Amazon I will see ads on Facebook for similar items. Attackers use similar tactics to show relevant click bait that users are more likely to

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