Securing Social Media Accounts
Original Issue Date: January 22, 2024
In today's interconnected world, social media plays a pivotal role in shaping public opinion and disseminating information. These platforms have become essential for individuals, governments, and enterprises alike, offering a powerful medium for communication and engagement. However, the widespread influence of social media also carry significant security risks. The security of social media accounts is paramount to prevent misuse, protect reputations, and ensure the dissemination of authentic information.
Recent trends have shown an increase in incidents where scammers and threat actors take over social media accounts of high-profile personalities, official government accounts, and enterprise accounts. These compromised accounts are often used for misinformation campaigns, scams, and other malicious activities leading to reputation damage. The ability of these actors to broadcast misleading or harmful content to large audiences underscores the critical need for robust security measures for social media accounts.
To mitigate the risks associated with social media account compromise and takeovers, the following best practices are advised:
- Strong Password Policies: Implement and enforce strong password policies, including regular changes and avoidance of password reuse across different platforms.
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Enable MFA for all social media accounts wherever possible.
- Access Control: Limit access to official social media accounts to designated officials and systems.
- Dedicated Secure Devices: Allocate dedicated and secured devices specifically for managing official social media accounts. These devices should have enhanced security features and should only be used for this purpose to reduce the risk of compromise.
- Dedicated Email Accounts: Use a dedicated and separate email account for operating official social media accounts. Ensure that the credentials for this email and the social media accounts are distinct and comply with the organization's password policy.
- Avoid Personal Email for Operating Official Accounts: Refrain from using personal email accounts for managing official social media accounts to prevent potential security breaches.
- Single Active Session: Ensure that only a single session is active at any given time. Regularly check and terminate any other sessions that are active under the account settings to prevent unauthorized access.
- Content Approval: Ensure that content posted on official social media handles is pre-approved by the appropriate authority within the organization.
- Controlled Access to Social Media Management Tools: If using social media management tools, ensure controlled and secured access to these tools, with regular reviews of who has access.
- Avoid Public Devices: Do not use public or unauthorized devices to access official social media accounts.
- Disable Geolocation: Turn off GPS access for official social media platforms to prevent location tracking.
- Software Updates: Regularly update social media applications and devices with the latest security patches.
- Access Revocation: Promptly revoke access to social media accounts if an employee's role changes or they leave the organization.
- Monitor Associated Email Accounts: Regularly check the email account linked with the social media accounts for any unusual activity alerts.
- Login Alerts: Activate alerts for unrecognized login attempts in the security settings of the social media platform.
- Caution with Third-Party Apps: Exercise caution when using third-party applications for social media management.
- Stay Informed: Keep abreast of updates from social media companies regarding security and privacy settings and implement them appropriately.
- Beware of Phishing and Malware: Do not click and submit credentials on phishing links and scan your system regularly with antivirus for the presence of any malware.
The information provided herein is on "as is" basis, without warranty of any kind.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: +91-11-22902657
Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In)
Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology
Government of India
6, CGO Complex, Lodhi Road,
New Delhi - 110 003