Social media can be a powerful tool for businesses and other organizations, but its use creates exposures that must be managed, according to two risk management executives.
“In today’s digital world, social media has become critical to the core of business operations,” Lianne Appelt, Whiteford, Maryland-based director of enterprise risk management for Salesforce.com Inc., said during a Tuesday session at Riskworld, the Risk & Insurance Management Society Inc.’s annual meeting in Atlanta.
As of last month, about 94% of companies, including 97% of the Fortune 500, were using social media, Appelt said. Consuming that content is the roughly 59% of the world̵7;s social media population, including 90% of people in the US who use social media “actively,” an average of 2 hours and 31 minutes a day.
Concerns still surround the medium, however, due to incidents of misinformation and privacy concerns, Ms. The appeal.
How a company manages its social media can create exposures, said Mary Jones, Sacramento, Calif.-based chief risk program manager for Oracle Corp. Running the program organically, using an organization’s own staff, can make oversight less robust than if it were handled by a third-party contracted vendor, who then opens access to the contactor and its employees, she said.
When managing social media, it can be useful for a company to have a common definition of what constitutes social media, Appelt said.
Carefully reviewing the content and its timing is also crucial, according to Ms. Jones. “One poorly executed post or misinterpreted comment can be enough to trigger an incident,” she said.