Social networking poses one of the greatest threats to user safety on the web, the head of internet security firm Kaspersky Lab has claimed.
In the wake of the recent hacks on the Fox News Twitter feed that saw attackers post tweets claiming US President Barack Obama had been assassinated in the early hours of Independence Day, security and data protection on social networking is under intense scrutiny.
“There are two issues with social networks,” announced Kaspersky Lab CEO and founder Eugene Kaspersky. “The first issue is that people trust too much, the second is that people publish too much personal information.”
Whilst sites such as Facebook have been repeatedly criticised and attacked over privacy concerns and a lack of user data protection Kaspersky believes much of the problem still resides with the sites’ users. “Most consumers still remember that it’s a bad idea to click on a linked file in an email, so they are aware of the danger from emails, they are aware of threats coming from the web, but when it comes to social networks, it’s gone.
“People are careless, they trust everyone, they think others are in the same community as they are, so they think that friends of friends are the people they say they are when sometimes they are not.”
On the actions needed to be taken to ensure the online safety of social networking users the internet security head said: “I think we need to educate everyone better. Remember, don’t trust everyone and know that if you have published any data, any information on a social network, it’s the same as if you published that in a global newspaper – so be careful and keep your brain switched on.”
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