The last ten years have seen a massive rise in the everyday use of social media platforms. Most of us have at least one personal account that we check every day and businesses see social media as a free advertising opportunity. The dark side of this popularity is that uploaded information is recorded online – for any hacker to find if they want to. Just how secure is our social media account information and does Cyber Essentials Certification hold the key to making our business accounts safer?
The Popularity of Social Media
What makes cybersecurity such a big problem? The sharp rise in social media use quickly outgrew official regulation in the early 2000s. Nowadays, statistics say that there are an estimated 1.2 billion users per day – on Facebook alone! It doesn’t stop with personal accounts either. Some 88% of companies are also using social media accounts is a method of increasing customer transparency, boosting brand recognition and getting a little free advertising.
While we were all engaging in social media, we didn’t think about the privacy issues we were exposing ourselves to. It only emerged in 2019 that MySpace was using a listening tool named ‘Overlord’ to spy on user’s private messages. Social Media security breaches were happening before the general public was aware that it was even possible for our data to be stolen and sold on. For at least a decade, consumers were left in the dark.
Luckily for those in the EU, the GDPR laws came into enforcement in May of 2018. They offered a clear set of guidelines on what was, and what was not, acceptable information for companies to share on your behalf. This law protects the general public from having data kept or sold about them without their express permission. It might have been a terrible headache for everyone who owned a website tailored to European clients, but it did have more than a few benefits for business of its own.
Compliance with GDPR Regulations Protects Your Business
Compliance with the GDPR laws when you are on social media sites should be an integral part of your firm’s IT governance. For one thing, non-compliance in the EU is now against the law. Any firm that handles private data must take appropriate measures to protect that data… or risk a hefty fine. While this seems like extra work for your business, it helps protect it, in the long term.
Ensuring GDPR are followed while your business interacts with social media sites is suitable for your firm in the following ways:
- Costly data breaches are less likely. It is the main function of GDPR and the primary reason to comply wherever you operate. Cyber Essentials certification can help with this, but we will cover that shortly.
- Any hacking attempts made on your firm will be less likely. It will preserve your hard-earned reputation.
- Your businesses data is more compact, with fewer maintenance costs.
- Data will be more comfortable to interpret and should save your time.
- Business 2 Business confidence – choosing suppliers and other affiliates that comply with the regulations gives you better confidence in your associates.
So, compliance with GDPR might be necessary, but it shouldn’t be a loss. When you raise your businesses cybersecurity by endorsing in Cyber Essentials Certification you are marking yourself as a source to be trusted with all data-handling. It doesn’t just apply to your businesses social media accounts but also extends throughout all the aspects of your firm.
GDPR Certification Protects your Business Social Media Accounts
Getting GRPR certification for your business helps protect you from all sorts of cyberattacks. Cyber Essentials is a government-backed scheme that was introduced to help protect data stored by contractors. Legally speaking, participation in the Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus scheme is only mandatory for those that actively seek government contracts… but certification has a variety perks that covers your business against Cyber threats on social media sites.
Cyber Essentials Certification involves participation in a self-review of the cybersecurity of your firm. If you want to be extra secure, you can partake in the Cyber Essentials Plus scheme. This scheme involves an external evaluation of your company’s data storage systems to ensure GDPR compliance. Once completed, both reviews will earn you Cyber Essentials certification. Certification ensures your customers can trust you with their data. More importantly, it actively prevents 80% of cyber-attacks.
Cyber Essentials Supports Your Businesses IT Governance
As well as protecting any data that your firm collects through its social media sites, GDPR certification supports your IT governance systems. Most Cyber Essentials certification provides an ongoing opportunity for streamlining your IT department. Any data stored is current and useful, information is more comfortable to retrieve, and the IT department has fewer software issues. Although cyber essentials certification may seem like extra work in the beginning; it won’t be long before that streamlined service starts offering its rewards in terms of time saved and productivity gained.
Both online and offline, your businesses data will be better protected when you choose to endorse the Cyber Essentials Scheme. Social Media sites will be directly impacted by this, since they give you the best opportunities for brand recognition. Some businesses in the modern age choose to use social media sites as their sole source of advertising. It means that any of the marketing data they hold on their customers through this means is subject to data breach… a problem that cost businesses £2.7 million in 2018 alone.
Does Your Business Use Social Media?
All data that your business processes must be as secure as possible under the Cyber Essentials scheme. How safe is your business while it engages with social media sites? Could cyber essentials certification be used to distinguish your firm as one to be trusted with consumer data? Do you want to join active users on your social media platforms – without the risk of exposing yourself to cybercrime?
If the answer to any of those questions is “yes”, then Cyber Essentials or Cyber Essentials Plus Certification could be precisely the solution you have been searching for!