The explosive popularity of social media has left corporations in the dust. Blogs, Facebook and Twitter–online forums that let like-minded people connect–attract not only employees surfing the Internet rather than doing their work, but salespeople looking for new customers, marketing executives seeking a cheap way to promote their products, and human resources staffers trying to fill jobs. Such technologies can leave companies exposed to a variety of risks. But experts say, not only have few companies taken steps to formulate policies on how to deal with those risks, many may not even recognize the danger.

Allen Nelson, general counsel, chief administrative officer and executive vice president at $1.1 billion claims administrator Crawford & Co. in Atlanta, Ga., started taking a look at social media because he was concerned that the company could be the subject of disparaging comments on the Internet. Once he began looking around, Nelson was surprised to find Facebook pages with the company name on them, set up by employees who were using them to communicate.

"That's a perfectly good thing to do, candidly, we just weren't aware from a senior management point of view," Nelson says. "That was one of the things that was kind of eye-opening."

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to Treasury & Risk, part of your ALM digital membership.

  • Critical Treasury & Risk information including in-depth analysis of treasury and finance best practices, case studies with corporate innovators, informative newsletters, educational webcasts and videos, and resources from industry leaders.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and Treasury & Risk events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

Susan Kelly

Susan Kelly is a business journalist who has written for Treasury & Risk, FierceCFO, Global Finance, Financial Week, Bridge News and The Bond Buyer.