Been Hacked? Start With The Customer.

Have You Been Hacked? Start With The Customer.

buffer was hacked You’ve been hacked. Whatever that may mean to your business, it’s generally not a good thing.  It could mean your email has been phished and your mail server is now puking out thousands of emails a second to your private company database; sending them to the latest and greatest anti-aging pills – or something worse! What is your “Crisis Plan?” What do you do first?

Well, we don’t have enough time here to deal with an entire crisis plan, but at CreateWOW, we’d suggest you Start With The Customer!

buffer hacked photo

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We saw a great example of this over the weekend (when else do these disasters take place?).  Buffer, a social media post scheduling app, was hacked early Sunday morning.

Some friends of ours – very respected in their knowledge of social media – were suddenly posting to Facebook and tweeting about a “Secret weight loss solutions” and  “Gaining new friends on Facebook…”   Now, we’ve seen the erroneous posts from time to time by even the best in the biz, but to see a whole feed of respected professionals hocking diet plans was just a bit too suspicious for us.

We immediately took the screenshot to the right and posted it, tagging those in the photo, making them aware of the potential hack. They were thankful and immediately changed their settings through Buffer and rectified the situation.

But what about the business that was hacked?

We wanted to illustrate our response to this hackery just to show where many technology companies fall short in their responses to trouble that affects their customers. While our reaction time was swift and direct, the powers at took an imediate stance of “We’re here to help” on their website and blog.

Within minutes after our post for our friends, we went to the Buffer blog to see if they’d taken action in rectifying or even notifying their customers of the hack. We were more than pleased to find the following post (image) about the status of the infringement as well as continuous updates as to the solutions they were providing for the situation.

hacked solutions for buffer

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While their post is lengthy, with no less than 7 status updates and suggestions to rectify the situation, we suggest you click through to the full post to see how precisely and perfectly Buffer handles the situation.  They held their stance that “Everything will be okay” and  “Buffer is on the job,” and came through within 24 hours of discovering the issue.

ON TOP OF THAT – While Buffer’s post was first being published, we received two (yes 2!) emails explaining what had happened and that they would have more information on their blog to update their VALUED CUSTOMERS.

Did I mention it was SUNDAY MORNING?

Okay, so enough of the Buffer Fan Club already.

Color us impressed, obviously.

While this post should be a blip on the screen of good social media and good customer service protocol / best practices, we too often see the companies in this situation focus on something other than the customer. Often times, it’s chaos and no one has a clear answer. Other times, it’s a “We’re the victim – pity us” position and may times (more than we’d like to see) it becomes a “No Comment” strategy.

When a tragedy befalls your company and it’s processes, remember the focus should never be on saving face or even defending the situation (or the bottom line). The customers are your brand’s support system. If you focus on the customers first, assuring them that their assets are secure and that you are thinking of them, the process of finding a resolution won’t seem as daunting in their eyes.

Do you have a crisis plan in place for situations like the one Buffer faced this weekend? What would happen if your mail servers were hacked? What would you do if your customers’ faith was tested?  What are some of the immediate steps you’d take in a situation like this?

We’d LOVE to hear from you.

If you’d like more on developing a social media crisis strategy, please contact us at Or you can reach out to us on our contact page!

Until then,
Keep Cooking – Infinitely Passionate Brand Advocates
Andrew B. Clark
The Brand Chef


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115 E. Washington Street,
Osceola, Iowa 50213

Phone: 515.257.6584

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