Such a thing as Safe Social Media?

MPP Global Posted by MPP Global on Monday, 22 August 2011

With over 750 million users on Facebook, 175 million user accounts on Twitter and 490 million accounts on YouTube, along with several applications such as check-in apps telling our ‘friends’ exactly where you are and when, it begs the question: how can these platforms handle such a crowd without a crush, let alone pickpockets? With so many shared files, spam links and internet hackers targeting social media sites, are these sites guaranteeing the safety of our personal details?

Social networking sites offer users a unique way to communicate. Centralising multiple communication channels through devices such as smartphones or Connected-TV as well as computers, socially active web browsers can chat, share articles, photos and gossip across many platforms. The opportunity for a ‘soft’ way in for businesses and consumers to communicate is also a major draw for many businesses in the 21st Century and means they can target consumers based on more insight than has ever been available previously.

However as seen with recent riots across the UK, many fingers are being pointed at social networking channels such as Blackberry Messenger for allowing users to operate beneath the radar of authorities and coordinate widespread criminal activity through viral messaging. With authorities stepping in at a late stage to begin tracking activity across the network and debating whether the network should be taken down, also draws up the subject of breach of human rights. The subject of security also broadens when taking into account the potential for security breaches around sensitive consumer data around eCommerce payments built into the social media platforms. It is imperative in light of recent security attacks on Sony for example that platforms maintain the highest level of security for user data to maintain the trust of users.

However in an ever changing world of communication technology, as web users grow more and more savvy around Social Media and as eCommerce payments continue to increase it is clear that platforms will have to establish some form of control. Not only to protect itself from criminal liability, but also to work around the content which users share via their platforms. User data must be securely protected and payment transactions handled by an effective solution to ensure that users can be confident in making payments through the platforms.

MPP Global are the leading provider of secure payment services and eCommerce solutions.