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Let staff use Facebook and Twitter says Internet security expert

Let staff use Facebook and Twitter says Internet security expert

Do you let your staff log into Facebook and Twitter while they are at work? No? Perhaps you should, at least you should according to Paul Ducklin – the technology head at Sophos, one of the world’s leading Internet security firms.

Paul Ducklin believes that employers need to be open to the power of social media and should embrace it, allowing their employees to use within the workplace. After all, with the Internet now enjoying a greater advertising spend here in the UK than television advertising, your business could reach more people online than through any other medium.

Paul Ducklin, addressing the delegates of Brisbane’s National Identity Crime Symposium, commented about social media:

“It’s a good way of rooting your brand, telling stuff to a large number of people in an informal way, so many organisations want to use sites like Facebook, services like Twitter, to tell their constituents fun stuff about themselves.”

“If you then also block social networking entirely [to your staff] at work it’s awfully hypocritical – ‘tell all your friends to come and look at our social media page but you can’t do it’.”

Of course, you’re probably thinking that you don’t want your staff idling away their time on Facebook when they should be working. You don’t want your employees wasting time, time that you’re paying them for. Paul Ducklin however believes that employees who want to waste time will find a way to do it, regardless of whether access to Facebook and Twitter has been prohibited or not. Therefore, by allowing social media to be used by your employees, you’re enabling them to spread the word about your business virally.

Mr Ducklin also commented that control of social networking within businesses should not come under the domain of IT. Social networking isn’t a computer related issue, it’s a human resources one and, as such, should be controlled by HR departments.

He added:

“Traditionally it’s been under the remit of the IT department. They can understand what the security risks are, what they’ll do is come up with a policy and some guidelines.”

“The thing is Facebook, they’ve changed their security settings recently and added new aspects every few months, so if that policy is not continually being revised in terms of what the company expects of you in the way business is going, then you’re just going to fall further and further behind.”

Perhaps it’s time you looked at your policy regarding social media in the workplace?

  • It’s unproductive because employees get distracted- maybe they could open it up during lunch breaks. Specific teams should create their own social network with ning- this could be used for video conferencing etc. employees would be more engaged.

  • I absoulutly agree with you Sam. I am trying to encourage my Dad to ask his boss about setting up their own group social network.

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