Companies need to deal with social media threat


Dramatic changes in the way companies do business will have a big impact on what they need to secure themselves, according to Cisco.

In Cisco's annual report, the use of social media for workers to interact with each other was seen as a key issue for security.

Companies were adopting collaborative technology for their internal systems, while employees were using social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to communicate with each other.

"Social media becomes either a vehicle for a possible threat, or for social engineering attacks," said Maurizio Taffone, head of security solutions in Europe at Cisco.

"We use social media like websites that actually allow people to disclose information that they probably won't disclose normally."

Social media attacks were by their nature more targeted, because they could aim fire at a specific set of users or company, such as a company group on Facebook or LinkedIn.

"We're not going to say that social media is good or bad, but this is a new trend that reaches everyday work and life," Taffone said. "This is something we should take into account at all levels, from the point of view of home users, employees, the enterprise and IT teams."

The report described how a criminal could masquerade as a trusted networking colleague, convince a user to visit a malicious website or pay for fake antivirus software.