How News & Media Organizations can Use GroupTweet to Safeguard Accounts Against Hackers


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Over the last year, numerous high profile media organizations such as The Associated Press and The Guardian have had multiple Twitter accounts hacked.

Twitter itself is warning news & media organizations to “expect even more hacks in the future.”  Twitter’s corporate office recently sent out a memo offering a variety of hack prevention techniques.  Some of the advice is reasonable and productive, whereas other advice is downright ridiculous.

From the memo:

Designate one computer to use for Twitter. This helps keep your
Twitter password from being spread around. Don’t use this computer to
read email or surf the web, to reduce the chances of malware
infection.

In other words, don’t let your employees use Twitter on the same computers or phones that they use to read email or go online.  I think we can all agree, that will never happen. So this leads us to the question, what can you do to keep your organization’s accounts safe?

Stop Sharing Your Organization’s Twitter Accounts with Multiple People!

The primary problem stems from the fact that organizations are sharing their Twitter passwords with dozens of employees.  If 50 employees have your Twitter password, then a phishing attack only needs to fool one of these 50 employees.  If only one or two people in your organization have the account password, this will dramatically decrease the chances your account will be hacked. You can find a more detailed explanation of the previous hacks here.

Twitter has created a security checklist for Newsrooms and the #1 item on the list is the following:

Use a strong, unique password and keep it safe. Do not share your password with anyone. Anyone. No matter how strong your password is, if someone else knows it, it’s no longer secure.

It is not uncommon for large media organizations to have 50-100 people managing their Twitter accounts.  Traditionally, the password has been freely shared among these individuals.  This needs to change.

You might be asking, how can an organization that needs multiple people to Tweet from their various accounts get away with only giving the password to one individual? Don’t we have to share the password with our employees!?

No! The answer is GroupTweet!

With GroupTweet, there is absolutely no need to share the Twitter password with any of your employees.  GroupTweet allows an unlimited number of employees to help Tweet from your organization’s various Twitter accounts safely and securely.

Not Just Great For Security, Your Employees Will Actually Enjoy Using GroupTweet

GroupTweet actually makes things easier and more simple for your employees.  Using GroupTweet is easier and more efficient than sharing the password.

Think about it, previously when you shared the password of your various accounts, each employee would need to remember all the passwords for the different accounts.  This resulted in organizations using the same password for multiple accounts, or emailing passwords throughout the office. Once an employee finally learns the password, he or she would have to log in and out of multiple accounts or use a social media dashboard such as Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to toggle between accounts.

If you tried to actually enforce a policy that required a single computer for all your company’s Twitter activity, you would quickly learn that your engagement and use of Twitter would drop dramatically.  Its simply not feasible.  GroupTweet offers the best of both worlds in that it improves your security and your employees will actually use it!

How Exactly Does GroupTweet Work?

With GroupTweet you decide exactly which employees you want to give access to your account.  Once you give access to these employees they can Tweet from the organizational account in two ways:

1) They can login securely to the GroupTweet dashboard with their own secure login details.

2) They can Tweet directly from their own personal Twitter accounts using whichever Twitter application each of them prefers.  There is no need for them to log in to a cumbersome social media dashboard or even log in and out of multiple accounts!

If one employee’s account is compromised, it won’t have any impact on the organization’s account.  Their contributor privileges can quickly be revoked.

Your Employees Will Use GroupTweet in Different Ways

GroupTweet is entirely flexible. We don’t force one method or another on all of your employees.  Some employees will prefer logging into the dashboard, whereas others will prefer sending the Tweets straight from their phone, tablet, or Twitter.com.

Sending a Tweet from the company account is as easy as including a Hashtag in their Tweet, or sending a Direct Message or @Mention to the company account.

Lets See Some Examples in Action

Here are some examples of contributors sending a Tweet directly from their own Twitter accounts.

@FoxNewsRadio uses GroupTweet to allow multiple reporters to securely send Tweets from the @FoxNewsRadio account.  Here is a Tweet from Mike Majchrowitz:

FoxNews has configured their GroupTweet so that anytime an approved contributor includes #fnr in a Tweet, that message will then also be Tweeted from @FoxNewsRadio and give attribution to the sender, as you can see below:

Mike Majchrowitz doesn’t need to login to the @FoxNewsRadio account to send that Tweet.  In fact, he doesn’t even know the password for the account, which ensures the security of the account.

Sky News Australia has their GroupTweet configured slightly different.  When any of their contributors include @SkyNewsAust in a Tweet, that triggers a GroupTweet from the @SkyNewsAust account.

Which results in the following Tweet below:

You can see they’ve chosen to include “via @NinaBStevens” at the beginning of their message.  GroupTweet is completely flexible and can be configured in a number of ways.

Don’t Want Contributors Names to Appear on Each GroupTweet?

No problem, you can make each GroupTweet look just like any normal Tweet.  There is no need to include the contributor attribution.  @ESPNmx has their GroupTweet settings configured to not display the contributor username.  @ESPNmx has several employees using the GroupTweet dashboard to send Tweets but they also have a couple employees using the hashtag GroupTweet method as you can see below:

Which results in the Tweet below:

Another option is to simply include a contributor’s initials at the end of the Tweet.  This configuration is being used by @Fox4KC as you can see below:

Let us Help You Keep Your Organization’s Twitter Accounts Safe

If you have any questions at all about how GroupTweet can benefit your organization, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask.  We are happy to work with you to develop a plan that will help you get the most out of GroupTweet.   You can reach out on Twitter or send me an e-mail, Ryan at GroupTweet.com

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Hi, I'm , Co-Founder of GroupTweet.com. GroupTweet allows you to add multiple contributors to a single Twitter account - creating a seamless group Twitter experience. Want to learn more? Click here for some examples or reach out via Twitter, you can find me @craft_ryan