26 September 2023

Cyber Centre goes social with new guidance

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The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) is helping Australians understand how social media and messaging apps can pose a risk to their security and privacy with the launch of updated guidance.

Releasing its updated Security Tips for Social Media and Messaging Apps guidance, ACSC said the guidance provided an overview of the risks as well as cyber security recommendations for businesses and individuals.

“Australians are increasingly turning to social media and messaging applications to stay connected, conduct business and exchange ideas and information,” ACSC said.

“However, these applications also come with risks,” it said.

“These risks include the exploitation of personal information, the collection of users’ data, and identify theft, fraud, reputational damage.”

The ACSC warned that even seemingly benign posts, messages, photos or videos could be used to develop detailed profiles of individuals.

It said these profiles could in turn be used in extortion or social engineering campaigns aimed at eliciting sensitive information, or influencing individuals to compromise organisations’ activities or systems.

ACSC said due to their popularity, social media and messaging apps were also a common way for an adversary to gather information on individuals.

“Even social media and messaging apps targeted at children or teenagers present a risk that personal or sensitive information may be collected,” ACSC said.

“When personal or sensitive information is posted to social media, or shared via messaging apps, this has the potential to cause reputational damage or embarrassment,” it said.

“Information that appears to be benign in isolation could, if aggregated with other information, breach users’ privacy.”

The ACSC’s 4-page updated social media guidance can be accessed at this PS News link.

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