McAfee » twitter https://blogs.mcafee.com Blog Central Sun, 01 Mar 2015 09:00:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Executive’s Social Media Profile Taken Over by Spammers, Highlights Dangers of Spam https://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/spam-takes-to-twitter https://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/spam-takes-to-twitter#comments Fri, 13 Feb 2015 01:05:11 +0000 https://blogs.mcafee.com/?p=41360 Sometimes, despite our best efforts, our online profiles get hijacked. For a top executive at a major social media company, that time was Tuesday, when he lost control of his personal Twitter account. It wasn’t a hacker that stole the executive’s account, however—it was a spambot. Spambots are automated programs that send spam messages. And […]

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Sometimes, despite our best efforts, our online profiles get hijacked. For a top executive at a major social media company, that time was Tuesday, when he lost control of his personal Twitter account.

It wasn’t a hacker that stole the executive’s account, however—it was a spambot. Spambots are automated programs that send spam messages. And he’s not alone. Spambots frequently target as many people as possible in the hopes of ensnaring an account or two to further perpetuate spam.

That’s also why social media profiles with a large amount of followers (this executive had roughly 13,100 followers) get targeted: the bigger microphone a user has, the more potential victims a spammer can ensnare.

Spam messages frequently link to advertisements, often promoting fraudulent services, malware (also known as malicious software) and bevy of unwanted programs targeted to infect your computer.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Defending your social media accounts from spambots isn’t difficult. Try these tips to keep your accounts safe online:

  • Enable two-factor authentication. I’ve discussed the benefits of two-factor authentication before, but it bears repeating: two-factor authentication, where your online presence is verified by both something you know (like a password) and something you have (like a smartphone), is one of the strongest methods of preventing unauthorized access to your account. True Key™ by Intel Security allows you to login to sites and apps with your facial math.
  • Beware of strange messages. Spambots rely on a victim’s trust. Don’t get tricked. Poor grammar or spelling, receipts for orders you didn’t make and unusual messages from friends are all indicators of a spambot.
  • Use comprehensive security. Most attacks hinge on the ability to install malware—malicious software crafted to steal data. Thankfully, you can protect your devices from malware with comprehensive security solutions like McAfee LiveSafe™.

And, of course, stay on top of the latest consumer and mobile security threats by following myself and @IntelSec_Home on Twitter and Like us on Facebook.

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How Social Media Helps Us Grieve https://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/family-safety/social-media-helps-us-grieve https://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/family-safety/social-media-helps-us-grieve#comments Thu, 26 Jun 2014 19:38:50 +0000 http://blogs.mcafee.com/?p=36233 The loss of a beloved family member can be so hard.  The pain and heartache feels relentless.  In years gone past, families were often able to physically rally around each other and provide the support so needed.  However in our crazy modern age where global citizenship, time poverty and a more fluid family structure prevails, […]

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The loss of a beloved family member can be so hard.  The pain and heartache feels relentless.  In years gone past, families were often able to physically rally around each other and provide the support so needed.  However in our crazy modern age where global citizenship, time poverty and a more fluid family structure prevails, grieving has changed.

We all loved Facebook for reuniting us with old friends from previous lives however the role of Facebook and other social media platforms in helping the grieving connect and process the passing of a loved one has become remarkably powerful.

Sharing the news of a loved one’s passing on Facebook almost always opens the floodgates of support.  The expressions of sympathy and kindness that ensue, provide great comfort to those grieving.  Those who have experienced the death of a family member often report that it is the sharing of stories and anecdotes of a recently departed loved one that really helps connect them to the memories and process the passing.

Many experts believe that the reason social media is particularly helpful to those grieving is because it provides a structure and framework that allows friends to easily express sympathy and support.  Before the social media era, we would have to knock on our neighbour’s front door if something was wrong which was too confronting for many people.

Social media provides us with a distance that is often safer but I do not believe less meaningful.  Grieving publicly and receiving feedback and well wishes from others online means the grieving can avoid often-painful face-to-face interactions.  They can tap into the commentary in their own time and in private, which may in fact be a healthier and easier way for many to work through their grief.

According to a recent report by The Huffington Post, 30 million people who set up Facebook accounts have passed away as of 2012.  So, what happens to these pages?  How do family members mange the digital lives of the recently departed?

In most cases, a family member or close friend reports a death to Facebook.  On receipt of a death certificate, Facebook changes the deceased’s timeline to a memorial page.  A memorial allows existing friends of the deceased to interact with the memorial page just as they would an active profile.  A Facebook memorial page can be a wonderful way to help family and friends of a passed loved one come together and mourn their loss.  Memories can be shared on the timeline and condolences posted.  Facebook does, very appropriately, change the way a memorial page can be interacted with.  For example, the profile will not be accessible via a public search and will not appear as a ‘suggested friend’ to another user.

If family members are not comfortable with a memorial page for their departed loved ones, they may choose to have the site deactivated, petition a court for access to the site (almost never occurs) or leave the page untouched.

Regardless of what decisions family members make, the important role social media plays in how we grieve as a society is clear.  Whether families choose to simply share news of the passing online, set up a memorial page or develop a comprehensive tribute website – how we manage our grief is truly an individual journey.  However what is universal is the need to feel supported and loved in our time of need – and social media helps us do that beautifully.

Take care,

Alex xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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