Hacking occurs when someone accesses a computer system by illegally circumventing its security system. In recent years, hacking has affected a number of government agencies, companies, and private parties (US!). Recently, Burger King felt the impact of hacking at its Twitter account. As the Chicago Tribune reported: “Someone changed the @BurgerKing feed to look like that of McDonald’s, substituting the McDonald’s logo in place of Burger King’s. The hackers sent several vulgar tweets, posted outrageous claims about company employees and practices, and even linked to a video by controversial Chicago rapper Chief Keef.”
In the face of these widespread hacking attacks, most companies have decided not to publicly acknowledge the problem. They are afraid of being embarrassed and consumers being less trustful of giving these companies more data. So, they have sought to address the issue behind the scenes. But, this strategy may be changing.
Consider these observations by Nicole Perlroth, writing for the New York Times:
“Hackers have hit thousands of American corporations in the last few years, but few companies ever publicly admit it. Most treat online attacks as a dirty secret best kept from customers, shareholders, and competitors, lest the disclosure sink their stock price and tarnish them as hapless. Rarely have companies broken that silence, usually when the attack is reported by someone else. But in the last few weeks, more companies have stepped forward. Twitter, Facebook, and Apple have all announced that they were attacked by sophisticated cybercriminals. The New York Times revealed its experience with hackers in a front-page article last month.”
“The admissions reflect the new way some companies are calculating the risks and benefits of going public. While companies once feared shareholder lawsuits and the ire of the Chinese government, some can’t help noticing that those that make the disclosures are lauded, as Google was, for their bravery. Some fear the embarrassment of being unable to fend off hackers who may still be in high school.”
Click the image from Mashable to read more from Perlroth.