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July, 2011

 

Using social media in our daily lives has become commonplace. Just about every major company has a Twitter, Facebook and YouTube account. We use Twitter to find out what’s happening and quickly respond to customer requests. Facebook is a great place to share information about products, services and events. Many businesses use social media to interact with customers and get work done. Even the Pentagon has embraced social media as an important communication medium.

One of the great (and bad) things about social media is how easy it is to share information. There are Twitter and Facebook buttons all over the web that make it easy to post information with the click of a mouse or swipe of your finger. That also means it’s easy to share confidential information accidentally or maliciously. A data breach is as easy as a click away.

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The last few months have seen a rash of data breaches at large and small companies.  Sony, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Sega are all household names and made big headlines.  Others, like Plymouth State University, may not be well known outside a small area, but the consequences are just as devastating.  Some of the breaches were caused by hackers attacking a database and others were through carelessness or negligence on the part of employees.

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