Feature

Corporate spies use social media

A company’s hiring patterns on LinkedIn are enough to give away its expansion plans.

LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are the latest front in corporate espionage, said Kashmir Hill in Forbes. Corporate spies are mining social-media sites for insight into companies’ projects, partners, and financials. A security firm in Bangalore, India, recently predicted a Singaporean company’s bankruptcy “based on employees’ tweets about the company’s belt-tightening” and an executive’s job-hunting post on LinkedIn. Cyberspies got a New York executive to reveal sensitive data by posing as an attractive blonde on Facebook. Not that spies even need loose lips. A company’s hiring patterns on LinkedIn are enough to give away its expansion plans. “It’s a lot easier to get good info now without doing anything dirty,” says security consultant Sean Campbell. “Whether companies like it or not, they’ve become a lot more see-through.”

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