5 Signs Your Corporate Security Department Needs a Better Way of Monitoring Social Media

It’s no secret social media is now a key source of intelligence for corporate security professionals. But with so many social media monitoring tools to choose from; departments can easily end up choosing software that hasn’t been developed with their needs in mind, i.e. social media monitoring software built for marketing purposes.

This poor choice often impacts efficiency, results and ultimately hurts the bottom line and, in some cases, employees.

Here are 5 tell-tale signs that’ll help you work out if the social media monitoring tool your corporate security department uses, needs an overhaul.

1.     Sometimes they’re the “last to know”

News travels fast these days. Some call it “the speed of internet”. What this means is, everyone and anyone with an internet connection can learn about and/or spread the breaking news happening at your corporation.

This increases the chance of staff members finding out things before your corporate security department does. Especially when it’s happening in a retail store or near the event your CEO is speaking at.

Corporate security departments using operationally focused social media monitoring tools give themselves a better chance of being in the “first to know” camp.

2.     Reports are missing known threats

Lack of awareness can linger long past the date something occurred (especially for potentially threats that haven’t developed fully).

When regular reports are missing developed or developing threats, that are already known to senior executives (whose lives and lively hoods depend on it), it may result in a loss of confidence from the executive team. Even when the corporate security department think they are being as effective as possible.

The wrong tooling might provide you with what looks like the most relevant and timely information, but you’re often missing the complete picture.

The right tooling, developed specifically for protecting executives, assets and supply chains, often provides more advanced/targeted search capabilities, e.g. Boolean search, than typical marketing related tools - where the focus is on brand and reputation management as well as social engagement.

3.     Incident response times are slow

Further to point 1. above, if your team is unaware of a threat, or simply hear about it too late, this can have a flow on effect and impact the overall incident response time. Potentially putting the safety of staff and executives at risk, impacting “Duty of Care” responsibilities and even losing revenue or impacting costs.

Having the right monitoring tool often means you can plan ahead (building out a calendar of events to monitor), giving you a better chance of being the “first to know” and therefore speeding up incident response times.

4.     Small incidents often escalate

You guessed it! Catching threats early can keep small incidents… Well, small. Saving you and your team from troublesome bigger incidents in the future. So, how does Social Media come into this?

Sometimes the earliest signals come from the most unusual sources. Social Media, if used with the right monitoring software, can act as an early warning system for you and your team. It can even supply this early intelligence directly to your phone via SMS or email so you are always on top of new incident’s.

5.     Your team is too reactive

If you’re the Head of Corporate Security and you can’t understand why your team never seems to be prepared for events such as executive travel and retail store/office openings.

It could be a sign they need to move to operationally focused social media monitoring software where they can plan ahead and schedule monitoring at certain locations over certain dates, times or seasons.

This not only instils a more active team culture, it’ll also reduce stress and allows your team to be in a better frame of mind when things really matter.

Conclusion

Just three years ago there was very little in the way of social media monitoring software tailored for corporate security professionals. Early adopters persevered, as a stop gap, with tools designed for marketers.

These days’ things are a little different:

  • The role of corporate security in any large corporation is becoming more important
  • Social media is an open source of intelligence when it comes to protecting executives, digital/physical assets and supply chains
  • Access to social media is now in the hands of the majority (wherever they are)
  • Threats can be indirectly identified via social media posts made by the public and media

And, most importantly, tools have been created specifically for corporate security professionals to make use to this free intelligence source.

The question is: Are you already making the most of these new tools or is it time to make the shift?

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