It’s never a good sign when what you think is a clever social-media wheeze results in journalists writing articles beginning “Oh, Viacom. You collection of ageing media silos…” That’s what happened last night when MTV’s Twitter account faked its own hacking, posting a series of tweets with the hashtag #MTVHACK purporting to be from someone who’d hacked the corporate account. The fact that they promoted upcoming awards from MTV and its sister network BET saw the hoax quickly rumbled. Cue derision from all quarters. Yet MTV’s mis-step doesn’t mask serious security-related questions being posed to Twitter by brands this week, after the official accounts for Burger King and Jeep really did get hacked. The more importance placed on social media, the more incentive there is for digital intruders with mischief – or worse – in mind.

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