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Always Review Security Settings of Your Social Media Accounts

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By Arthur Moses Opio

We thank you for reading the information we share in regards to ICT best practices at Makerere University.

As I write this, right now there are many people all over the globe that have embraced social media as a tool of communication. I know in Makerere there are many people as well both staff and students who are on this social trail using it for all sorts of things namely research, social interactions, news etc. Most of the colleges as well have a social media account and it is important for those managing these accounts to make sure that their accounts haven’t been breached in any way.

Breach on Google+

A report came out recently from the Wall Street Journal saying “Google Exposed User Data, Feared Repercussions of Disclosing to Public”. They say Google opted not to disclose to it users its discovery of a bug that gave outside developers access to private data. Part of the measures to this response was that Google will shutdown Google + permanently. For more information about this please visit this link.

Why we need to know more about this social media attacks?

  • Malicious outsiders cause the largest percentage of data breaches (56%)
  • Social media incidents accounted for over 56% of the 4.5 billion data records compromised worldwide in the first half of 2018. For more about this read from this link

Many times while using our phones or any smart devices, third party apps always ask for permissions. However we never sit back to ask if the permissions we are giving won’t put our devices or data in a place of compromise. Your profile information can be accessed and a lot more given out. We have seen cases where websites or surveys being done always ask us to sign in using our Facebook or Gmail accounts, this came in to cut out the long way of filling in forms online so that we can have access to a certain service. But you need to be very careful, at times it would be good to read a little bit more to understand what kind of things they need access too, if you aren’t comfortable, just stay put.

The other good news to shutting down Google + is that, additional security features are being implement like;

  • More granular Google Account permissions
  • Limiting the types of apps that are permitted to access Gmail
  • Limiting apps’ ability to receive Call Log and SMS permissions on Android devices; and
  • No longer making contact interaction data available via the Android Contacts API.

There fore we encourage all those using social media including the different college social media accounts to

  1. Review your security settings to know what app is accessing your account
  2. Change passwords and make them strong (should be alphanumeric)
  3. Do not share your passwords with anyone
  4. Use two factor authentication (add your phone number as a security measure or alternative email address, so that if any activity is suspicious, you will get a notification)

PS. Always back-up your information (it could be on a smartphone or computer)

Last week we shared about a feature developed by Firefox called Firefox Monitor, you can use this to check if your email has been breached, you will get measures on how to go about the breach. Click this link for more on Firefox Monitor. for enquires, please email us at