Facebook has recently announced through official channels that the organization has sustained a sophisticated hacker attack. There has been no evidence till now of user data compromise. The attack was executed when some of the company officials visited a mobile developer website that had malicious software that compromised their systems. There was no apparent attempt to access user data and this attack is being termed as an attempt to access company share-holder information but Facebook quickly quarantined and scrubbed the devices, notified the police, and started an investigation but with the attack. Any possible breach would be detrimental to the social network.
One of the biggest differences that have altered the way we communicate is the emergence of social media. Social media platforms are the key drivers for exchange of information, sometimes confidential. People and organizations share their ideas and personal information on the social network with a certain security in their minds about the security of the whole system and that it won’t be leaked. Facebook monetizes that trust through advertisements and other means of monetization. One successful hack on the network leading to data compromise will mess up the already shaky image of Facebook further as a brand would come down, let alone the trust vested in the social network to hold personal information.
Facebook takes care of the fact that it holds its users valued data and information. Facebook recruits top talent every year in the security management team and to make sure breaches don’t happen. Also, Facebook is a big bounty payer to the white hat hackers that report bugs in the code or a loophole that exists in the security system. Facebook stands on shaky grounds right now. Its market image isn’t great as of now, its stocks have been falling and user trust have been all time low after the recent allegations that Facebook tracks user data and the spam cases that are growing like weed.
In the event of an attack, fear will spread like wild fire. The news of the attack was covered by New York Times, BBC, ABC News, The Guardian, and just about every tech news blog and the worst would be Facebook users propagating the fear on Facebook itself. The value proposition of a free, unified communication tool would be marred by doubt and disbelief. The news of twitter accounts been hacked was received as a threat to user information and was taken extremely seriously by the organization when they encrypted the passwords of all their users. Facebook’s story is different. The privacy settings are a hassle and a lot of users have cribbed about the user non-friendliness in the past which has led Facebook to revamp the security settings over and over again. A successful attack would consolidate all the doubts and fears and would push Facebook over the edge.
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