Which is more secure – Facebook or Twitter?

Facebook and Twitter have become powerful social and web 2.0 tools. Friends can stay connected with friends living in other countries. The sites are recognized as being marketing tools for businesses more and more each day. Though, what about security? Are they both equally secured or is one leading the other?

For both sites, some common sense needs to be employed when it comes to releasing personal information. Facebook allows you to exclude anyone not in your respected and known groups through their ‘friends’ system. Twitter accomplished this by having the option to follow a conversation or not.

But this doesn’t stop your profile being found and targeted by spammers.

Let’s look at the issues currently being addressed by both sites. Recently, Twitter was hacked and this caused a lot of controversy over its ability to secure personal details. The prevalence of this came to a head when Britney Spears and a St Louis Cardinals Manager by the name of Tony La Russa found fake profiles being used in their names.

Twitter are combating this problem with a verified account service which adds a seal stating it is verified. Though this feature initially will only be open to the elite few i.e. celebrities, public officials and blue chip corporations. However, this service does need to open up to everyone quite quickly as recent security compromises have raised the red flag on ‘how secure is social networking with Facebook and Twitter?’

The emerging threats have raised concerns globally amongst industry practitioners and online social communities. Real-time communications are now so widely used, not to mention other sites like MySpace, that the need for further security procedures has become a requirement.

So, which is more secure? Is it down to the user’s common sense or is one more secure than the other? Let’s look at some salient facts. Facebook updates your page as it is updated in real time as does Twitter. Facebook changed some aspects such as no longer having the user messages begin with the user’s name. Also, Facebook further protects privacy by a recent change to the status message. It used to be ‘What are you doing right now?’, and has suitably changed to ‘what’s on your mind’.

This introduced a profound difference in the level of security and does place Facebook on a higher level of security as compared to Twitter. There is a mutual agreement between accounts to become friends that can’t be altered in any way. Conversely on Twitter, users can decide to follow you easily. Twitters simply look for conversations that they find useful, or a sales angle, and follow the conversation with no hindrance from the user whom started the conversation. Yes, you can then block them but you are already being followed – username known.

Surely, this infringes on personal privacy and freedom. Do you want those people to follow you?? Reciprocation goes out the window.

In April, a password stealing attack by some frivolous phishers compromised Facebook’s security credibility. A “justfuns” scam directed users via a mail box message to a web site full of spam messages like Viagra ads and such like advertising. Twitter fell foul to the “mikeyy” worm attacking user accounts in May which hijacked user profiles and sent unauthorized tweets through them.

Again, we must come back to common sense. Has your username and password become ubiquitous? If so, it’s just a matter of time before it will be found by criminals whom use scripts to search the web for a defined set of passwords, so reset your password often. Additionally, Facebook is safer than email, much less chance of being phished despite worms like “mikeyy”.

In conclusion, Twitter allows many sites like Tweetdeck and Twhirl to access twitter accounts without having to log into twitter: this is a security compromise. Your information becomes very available to 3rd party companies plus users can follow you whenever they desire.

To that end, right now, Facebook offers more security than the more accessible Twitter.

About the Author

Stephen Davies MSc is a freelance content writer and SEO advisor who has contributed articles to a large number of organizations and MD of ClickForSEO.com that allows marketers to publish promotional content. For information on his article writing and SEO services please visit http://www.clickforseo.com and follow his advice on twitter at http://twitter.com/clickforseo

3 thoughts on “Which is more secure – Facebook or Twitter?

  • not certain security works on either social media site, nor any others.. I dont mind the fact that twitter allows so many apps as they are really working for my business.

  • I most certenly like your innovative angle that you have on the subject. Certainly wasn’t planning on this at the time I begun browsing for tips. Your ideas were totally simple to get. Im glad to find out that there’s an person here that obviously understands on the spot what its is talking about.

  • I realy liked your innovative angle that you have on the subject. I wasnt thinking on this at the time I begun browsing for tips. Your ideas was totally easy to get. Happy to find out that there’s an person online that gets it exactly what its is talking about.

Comments are closed.