Corporates 'nervous' about Web 2.0

Just days after Lord Browne’s former lover was found out to have posted his personal thoughts on Facebook, BT is advising corporates how to minimise the risks of Web 2.0.

The telecoms giant says organisations are “nervous” about sensitive information finding its way into the public domain, through the growing network of blogs and social networking sites.

At the same time, individuals looking for corporate jobs are “worried” that views they’ve posted online may be their undoing if the company runs an internet search of their name.

In short, Web 2.0 presents a world where employers fear data leaks, while their hires fear for their career prospects, BT said yesterday.

But company veteran Ray Stanton said Web 2.0 technologies offer the chance for business to collaborate more quickly, more creatively and more effectively than ever before.

“These opportunities will only be seized if the businesses of today learn to embrace them,” Bruce Schneier, the technology expert told InfoSecurity Europe last week.

Delegates heard from Schneier, who is also founder of BT Counterpane, that Web 2.0 has created a “climate of fear,” which the provider says is making corporates increasingly uneasy.

However, both Schneier and Stanton went on to outline a three-step plan to help businesses deal with the realities of Web 2.0.

The first step is concerned with behaviour - organisations must educate their users about “what does and does not constitute acceptable usage of Web 2.0 technologies.”

Step two is related to technology aimed at limiting the availability and lifespan of posts. For example, software that allows users to limit who has access to their blogs and personal web pages will become more effective and more widely available.

Finally, organisations must be foresighted enough to understand that Web 2.0 technologies are here to stay.

“Fighting them is futile,” BT said in a message to corporates. “Instead, successful companies will be those that find ways to integrate and take advantage of them.”


8th May 2007

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