Computer Security 18% of Companies Get Malware Infections Through Social...

18% of Companies Get Malware Infections Through Social Media Platforms

malware from social mediaThe use of social media is at an all-time high and is not expected to decline anytime soon. Record numbers of companies have taken to social media to jump onto the fast moving bandwagon that has reshaped our lives over the past five to ten years as we know it. The ugly side of social media has revealed its face all too many times, and it is showing with 18% of companies now getting malware infections through popularized social media platforms.

According to a study conducted by Osterman Research, 18% of their surveyed companies have experienced malware infiltrations from social media platforms. In their study, 73% of all surveyed companies use a Facebook account for business. 64% of them use LinkedIn, and 56% of companies use Twitter, all for business purposes.

With the majority of business utilizing social media, it is no wonder that malware has propagated to the point that it is now causing harm to about one in five companies that use either Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. For nearly as long as Facebook and Twitter have been around, malware authors and cybercrooks have utilized the social media platforms to spread malware. While the likings of Facebook and Twitter have taken significant strides in curtailing the spread of malware on their networks, malware proliferation is still a serious matter that is affecting nearly 20% of businesses that use them.

Companies should only adhere to the malware warnings when it comes to using social media. As far as discontinuing use of social media to prevent a malicious attack, it won't work because there are many other avenues to contract malware on your computer over the Internet.

Industry experts have confirmed their fear, about 80% of all surveyed companies have said that they detected malware infiltrations coming from their network through email. In comparison, also according to Osterman Research, about 72% of companies have had a run-in with malware that comes from surfing the Internet, which should be classified as being nearly as dangerous as opening suspicious emails containing malicious attachments or links.

Funny enough, computer security researchers don't have to go too far and speculate on the idea that most malware is sent through email. However, with social media accounting for billions of users around the world, such networks provide the perfect breeding grounds for cybercrooks and hackers to exploit users. Within the scope of social media users, well over 1 billion active users on Facebook alone, business make up a large portion of the social media community and hackers thrive on this very notion.

The chart below from Osterman Research is a clear indication of email being the number one culprit for malware infiltration. Though, the third largest threat, one that's growing at an alarming rate, is malware entering networks through social media platforms. It should be known that companies, just like those who leisurely use social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, should be mindful and vigilant when it comes to clicking around on suspicious links, images and advertisements on social media platforms. Experts believe that because social media is becoming an essential part of the operation of companies around the world, we will only see growth in the area of malware infiltrations rooted from all of the popular social media networks.

Sources of Malware Infiltration - image source: Osterman Research
malware infiltration chart