Symantec detailed some of the dirty secrets of Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ threats at its annual reviewers' workshop here today, and revealed a planned project to protect you from social networking manipulators.
The project from Norton Labs, currently called Norton App Advisor, combines Norton's Safe Web data with social network open API data to provide a safety rating for apps. It aims to prevent malicious apps that prey on your social network activity from collecting data on you and your friends, which Symantec representatives said was a major security concern.
"Social networks have a trust model built in, to trust posts from their friends. This trust model gets exploited by attackers, and it's difficult to distinguish between a post from a friend and a post from an attack," said Nishant Doshi, architect for Symantec's security response group that deals with browsers. He explained that the attacks are successful because they go viral, just like your latest favorite Nyan Cat video. They start small and spread fast.