Monday, April 29, 2013

Social Media And Liability 

As this article points out, the SEC's permission to corporate America to use social media to disclose material information presents risks and liabilities.  Hackers have already invaded corporate Twitter accounts and sent false information, notably last week.  Stock manipulators will do the same and profit from gyrations of a company's shares.  The issue facing business is its liability for letting that happen.  Was its security adequate to prevent hacking of the account?  That a hacking incident was successful is prima facie evidence it was not.  Cue the tort lawyers who will soon be filing shareholder lawsuits when hacking incidents occur.  This more than anything else may spur American corporations to get serious about security.  From a communicator's perspective, any medium we use for corporate work should be carefully secured with strong passwords changed often and firewalls that complicate, if not defeat, efforts of hackers.  There are numerous ways into any system and security is never fail-safe, but companies have to show they tried energetically to prevent outsiders from getting in.  


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