Today must have been a horrific one for the social media team at Burger King. Their twitter account (@BurgerKing) was hacked by someone claiming to be Anonymous. The result was a string of horrendous twitter posts, some of which you can see here. If you handle social media for your company and haven’t seen what happened yet, I’ll wait. Go check it out and then come back.
Bad doesn’t even begin to describe it, does it? That’s why you have to take social media and security seriously. Don’t put your social media accounts in the hands of people you can’t trust. Oh and don’t treat your social media team poorly. They can do a lot of damage. In this case, people know what happened and aren’t going to hold it against Burger King. What if it was a little more subtle though? Say a few tweets were rewritten to sound homophobic or racist. That could cause a lot more damage. Especially if it wasn’t caught quickly.
What if it happened to a smaller business though? The media wouldn’t be clamoring to cover it, thereby exonerating your name. Also, Twitter probably wouldn’t respond to the degree they did for Burger King. You might not even get your Twitter account back at all and then you’ll have to rebuild on a new account and hope your old account doesn’t continue to haunt you.
If your image is important and you choose to participate in social media, do it right. Make sure that the person posting on behalf of your brand is trustworthy, that you treat them right and that you maintain appropriate security measure with your account credentials.