Social media is one of the most extensive platforms where people share information. Individuals and businesses alike use it, but that makes it all the more an attractive target to hackers and cybercriminals. Unfortunately, data breaches are all too common, and you won’t know your information is leaked until it’s too late. Many data breaches are only discovered months after the fact, and only reported after an analysis of the damages.
Some tools can help you protect your data, like a Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter proxy, which you can find if you click here. However, it’s still better if you understand the dangers before sharing your data so that you can better protect yourself.
What’s a Data Breach?
A data breach is when an unauthorized individual, like a hacker or cybercriminal, access confidential and sensitive information without permission. The danger of data breaches is that these individuals can sell the information on the dark web or use it to harm individuals or companies using other methods such as phishing, ransomware or identity theft.
Common Cyber Attacks
Cybercriminals and hackers use various methods to breach social media protections and other online platforms. Below, we look at the most common ones:
- Distributed Denial of Service attacks:The hacker overwhelms the business’ bandwidth with a large volume of requests simultaneously, which can cause the servers to crash or other clients to become unable to access it due to the DDoS.
- Ransomware:When cybercriminals use software to breach your network and lock away the information. They’ll hold that information for ransom until the company provides them with what they ask for.
- Malware:Any unauthorized software or program the hacker uses to access your network. It can act like a virus, but it’ll infiltrate your systems without your permission to create a gap in the protections for the hacker.
- Phishing:Pretending to be a reputable company asking for information like login details. It can be an email from your “bank” or “associates” asking for the password to your social media platforms or similar requests.
Latest Data Breaches
Some of the latest data breaches show that this is an ongoing problem. We’re about halfway through the year, and yet there’s been over 21 data breaches in the last six months alone. The year started with a Twitter breach, where over 200 million accounts were compromised.
The latest data breach is from a file transferring software, MOVEit, which happened on the 1st of June. This breach compromised various other firms and their information, like BBC, British Airways, and more. Discord also experienced a data breach in May, with ChatGPT reporting a data leak in March.
Social Media Sites with the Most Breaches
The above are just some of the latest breaches for this year alone. If you look at social platforms and all the attacks and breaches they suffered in the last few years, you’ll realize these platforms aren’t as safe as they might seem.
Facebook has the most recorded data breaches, having reported eight since 2004. Overall, it exposed and sold information to over two billion users. Further, Meta, which owns Facebook, also owns platforms like Instagram and Whatsapp.
LinkedIn is the social media platform with the second largest number of data breaches. The four data breaches it experienced resulted in over 1.1 billion users having information from their accounts leaked. Twitter comes in a close third, with four leaks reported, but less users affected. Around 370 million users are thought to have had their data leaked during these four breaches.
Overall, Instagram and TikTok are two popular social media platforms that lost the least amount of data in a breach, but Instagram still compromised around 49 million users’ information. This makes it a worthwhile target for hackers.
How Social Media Affects Your Business
Social media is critical to any business, as it’s one of your leading advertising platforms. Having the trust of your customers is crucial, but if your company is part of a data breach, your clients will lose trust in your company. If you have a visible account on a social platform, you look like a more appealing target to hackers. However, even individual accounts get caught up in the crossfire, which is why tools like a Twitter proxy are critical. The dangers cannot be overstated, especially regarding social platform breaches.
Dangers of a Data Breach
One of the best things about social media is also the weakness hackers can exploit. Most of our social platform accounts are linked. You can post something on Instagram and Facebook, your TikTok account can grab information from Facebook, and you can connect all of your accounts to LinkedIn.
However, this means that one platform getting breached can put the other in danger. As such, it becomes infinitely more dangerous. Further, if your passwords are released, it can give a clue as to what type of passwords you use for other logins. As a business, your business account can affect other factors, like if you linked your website to it, added payment details, or any additional sensitive information.
Protect Your Information
Data breaches aren’t getting less frequent. In fact, they seem to be picking up speed. Even when a company seems secure, there’s always the chance a hacker or cybercriminal gets lucky and manages to breach its security.
That’s why it’s better to think before giving your information and consider how to keep your data safe. Using a Twitter proxy, or any similar service, will help hide your IP address and protect your servers. While it might not completely prevent a data breach on its own, it’s a part of your safety you can control.