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Social Networking biggest Security Risk for SMBs - Panda Security

According to Panda Security's 1st annual Social Media Risk Index, issued in the 2nd week of September 2010, one of the major security risks faced by small and medium businesses (SBMs) is from social networks.

Panda Security carried out a survey among 315 IT members who are responsible for the setting or applying of network policies at organizations having 15 to 1000 employees.

As per the study, around 33% of the surveyed companies had been a victim of malware or computer virus infection generated via social media. Moreover, 35% of users who got infected by malware through social networks bore financial loss. Also, few companies suffered losses more than $5,000.

The survey also revealed that, among SMBs, the most popular social networking site is Facebook with 69%. Next on the list were Twitter with 44%, YouTube with 32% and LinkedIn with 23%.

Notably, as per the survey, Facebook was alleged to be the main culprit for organizations which suffered malware infection added up to 71.6%. The second in the list of malware infection is YouTube, which had 41.2% of all.

While commenting on these data, Sean-Paul Correll, Threat Researcher at Panda Security stated that now a days, Social Networking is widespread in SMBs due to its numerous business advantages, yet they does not contain any serious threat, as reported by informationweek.com on 14th September, 2010.

Such as, it has been found by the survey that, social media is liable for a considerable number of "human error" privacy breaches. In reality, around 23% of companies reported misplacing confidential data through social networking, because of their employees. Facebook is the main culprit among social networks regarding privacy violation, which is followed by Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.

The firm highlighted that from security point of view, the findings are quite disturbing. Correl also added that, while a considerable number of SMBs have been a victim of malware from social networks, they are happy to find that most of the companies have the required formal governance and education programs.

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