It is widely agreed that people do not want their private information to be made easily accessible on the Internet. One of the main reasons that people take online privacy so seriously is to protect themselves against identity thieves and stalkers, among other online dangers.
Charles Wood, an information-security consultant, offers several ways to ensure online privacy. Information at risk includes a person’s address, phone numbers, date of birth, social-security, and credit-card numbers, among many other pieces of information. Wood emphasizes that one should take all necessary precautions to shield their online identity and privatize what information they can. He warns against volunteering personal details online, whether through a blog, personal website, or any other form of online technology that could be intercepted with an ill intention.
Wood also encourages that people educate themselves; people need to inform themselves of what is out there. Unless people are aware of the online dangers, they are putting themselves at risk. Wood explains how some people are surprised to the extent that search engines, such as “Google,” can recover newspaper articles, internet discussion groups, or blogs regarding one specific person. Among other things, a search engine can reveal one’s “Amazon.com” profile, profession licenses, or a quick post to a friend’s blog. In addition to search engines, Wood relates how personal information can be retrieved through other sites, such as “ZabaSearch.” Upon typing someone’s name into the search box at “ZabaSearch,” that person’s address, phone number, and year of birth are likely to come up.
In addition, Wood claims that people should learn to cover their tracks. However, this is no easy task. After all, some information may be harder to erase than others, as it is continually updated and re-posted to the internet. In order ensure the information is once again concealed, people must make the extra effort. In order to ensure such information is kept private, both time and money are required, neither of which people can loosely spend.
Finally, Wood insists that people should guard their information by avoid giving it out in the first place. One the information is out, it can be very difficult to conceal it. Some ways Wood suggests that people do this is by refraining from signing up for supermarket loyalty cards, mailing in warranty cards, or even entering sweepstakes. In addition, one should never feel to need to give out hisher Social Security number, even when strongly encouraged to do so. It is up to you to make the better judgment.