Why someone would set up a fake social media profile? The answer correlates with news of cyber-attacks on businesses and other organizations being targeted with advanced persistent threats which has risen sharply over the past two years.
The Register reports Social engineering via platforms such as Facebook can be one of the early stages of an advanced persistent threat (APT), the latest buzz word on the information security scene and a technique commonly linked to cyber spies operating from China.
One highly publicized cyber-attack was on Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) Admiral James Stavridis NATOs most senior military official.
It is believed the social media account in his name was attempt to trick colleagues, friends and family into giving away his personal secrets on the social network
These cyber-attacks on social media are often used to gather intelligence to crack a password or to gain insight to knowledge based questions or challenge questions. For example:
All these questions are meant to bypass social media security and replace that used-to-be-secret-obscure word that only you and your parents would know the answer to.
Officers of a company or anyone in a pivotal position like HR or accounting, need to recognize IT security risks and realize while they may not be a NATO commander they do have access to company and client data that may be worth serious money to a thief, competitor or foreign government.
Below are a few social media security tips on how to prevent cyber-attacks