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Secure Use of Social Media, California Style

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Steve Lunceford

Lost in the shuffle last week when the DoD rolled out their social media policy was another similar rollout by the state of California (PDF here; LA Times Story here).

“The more we increase the state’s online presence to enhance communication and transparency, the better we are able to serve Californians,” said Teri Takai, California’s Chief Information Officer in a press release. “At the same time we must be diligent to ensure we use social media tools in a way that is secure and appropriate for official business. This policy provides a risk management framework for agencies to consider in their use of these innovative and dynamic tools.”

The policy encourages state officials to use social media tools, while requiring that only those users who are authorized and have been trained regarding their roles, responsibilities and the security risks as outlined in the policy, have access to social media sites while at work as a state employee. It also requires that agencies assign the management and monitoring of official social media sites to the same internal organization or individual that oversees public communications for the agency.

The policy is accompanied by a Social Media Standard to help state agencies consider the various risk factors associated with the use of social media sites.

I had the pleasure of co-hosting a webinar with Teri Takai in December. She shared some of her thoughts on how to balance official vs unofficial use of social media, as well as key successes for the state. It’s a 45 minute session, but worth a listen if you have the time.

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