A study released just yesterday by Grant Thornton LLP and Financial Executives Research Foundation, Inc, titled “Social media and its associated risk“, found that executives of both public and private companies see social media as a viable marketing strategy but have not yet developed the necessary governance, compliance and risk policies/procedures associated with it.
More than half (53%) of the senior financial executives who responded to the survey see the corporate use of social media increasing significantly over the next 12 months, and almost half (48%) feel that social media will be an important component of their future corporate marketing efforts.
The survey also revealed that more than three-quarters (76%) of respondent companies do not have a clearly defined social media policy, and more than half (61%) do not have an incident management plan to help them deal with instances of fraud or privacy breaches.
Executives are allocating more funds to IT security overall, but not necessarily to address risks associated with social media. Many companies do have e-mail communication and technology usage policies, but very few companies have policies that specifically address social media governance and risks.
The 23-question online survey was conducted during August and September of 2011 and was completed by 141 senior financial executives from public and private companies. FERF also conducted in-depth interviews involving eight open-ended questions during September 2011. Social media and its associated risks is based on the findings of both the online survey and the in-depth interviews.