Have you tried Pinterest yet? This is now one of the fastest growing social networks reaching over 10 million users in record time. Iâ€™ve heard it described as Twitter, but for pictures which pretty much sums it up. Just last week Pinterest had to lock an undisclosed number of user accounts as a result of a spam outbreak. The company reported that this was not the fault of a data breach by them but rather blamed recent leaks of user log-in credentials from other social networking websites. The log in credentials of both Yahoo and Linkedin accounts were recently leaked with over 6 million Linkedin passwords posted on line.
The growing Pinterest user base is an attractive target for spammers
Many small businesses use Pinterest as a way to promote and grow their small business. However as the number of genuine users increase so too does the level of interest from spammers. There have been several reports of Pinterest spammers stealing and repurposed images from legitimate vendors to promote scams and computer viruses.
Spammers are active on all social networking sites, many businesses regard the move to on-line spam and phishing as a natural response to the growth in the user communities of the main social networking sites. It stands to reason that a relatively new social networking site like Pinterest with a growing user base will be an attractive target for spammers. Pinterest also sends a lot of email notifications to users which presents spammers with a convenient email spam route.
With over 10 million users pinning and following each other, thatâ€™s a lot of emails being generated. As Pinterest grows spam and malware is definitely something to be on the lookout for in the future as the site becomes increasingly popular. Unfortunately, once an image is posted on Pinterest all rights are surrendered, at this point anyone including cybercriminals can use the images on Pinterest for spam or other purposes without infringing on copyright.
Social networks must tighten social spam filters to protect users
It is possible for an executive in any company to fall prey to such scams, business users are just as susceptible to phishing attacks via spam as consumers are, the difference is that in the business environment the stakes can be considerably higher. A successful corporate phishing scam can lead to financial loss and loss of customer data. Organisations need to remain vigilant and follow proven guidelines such as not clicking on links or attachments in unsolicited emails. Social Networks like Pinterest too have a responsibility in preventing successful attacks from happening. It is clear that the implementation and tightening of social spam filters is inevitable if this is to be achieved. Are social networking sites like Pinterest doing enough to secure their users ?