Even in 2021 Internet Privacy Still Matters

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written by craig beam posted on April 20, 2021

It would be all too easy to lose ourselves in the idea that nothing is ever truly private anymore. Many of us frequently share formerly private parts of our lives online via social media and other methods. Online contracts contain lengthy terms and conditions, and we frequently permit websites to track our every move. Here’s why to fight for internet privacy even in our often public life in 2021.

Big Data Becomes Big Money

A single individual may not feel important in how a business runs, but they would be mistaken. However, the data that an individual provides to a business is incredibly valuable to that company. In fact, some of the biggest data harvesters offer their services for free to make money. The value of big data to any business is summed up by datafloq.com as such:

Businesses stand to greatly benefit from big data. Today, business leaders and project managers know how to use big data in order to get the biggest return on investment. Streamlining operational inefficiencies, minimizing risk, getting a thorough look at business performance — the use of big data is valuable for all levels of management.

It is a newer concept than most, but the use of big data to maximize profits now has some shelf life to it. If it were not so valuable, companies would have stopped bothering to gather it long ago.

In some ways, this may seem almost like a harmless activity that a business does to help maximize the customer experience by guiding potential buyers to the products and services that their data most suggests they would like to buy. It might be comforting or easy to think of it in those terms, but the reality is that we give up massive amounts of our internet privacy every time we agree to the terms set out by a corporation.

Fear Of The Misuse Of Data

A big concern for internet privacy advocates is that their personal data could fall into the wrong hands. You don’t have to go very deep into the Internet to find stories of data breaches at major corporations, non-profits, and governmental entities. There is no system that is perfectly secure. However, hackers know that there is a lot of potential financial gain to stealing data.

The retail titan known as Target was the target of a massive data breach in 2013. It was a heavily covered story at the time, and it continues to make headlines to this day. In that breach, hackers infiltrated 41 million Target shoppers’ credit card data. This left those who lost their data in this breach to have to deal with the fallout from it. It might seem like this kind of thing was inevitable and unavoidable, but it simply points to the larger picture that our privacy and data must be protected even in a world where some of us feel that we can share just about anything.

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Protecting Data Privacy in Today’s World

Given the dower stories detailed above and the reality of the world as it stands today, it would seem almost impossible to protect one’s data privacy in today’s world. There are some small things that any of us can do to provide at least some minimal level of support and security around our data.

Popular Science Magazine recommends keeping software updated as one example:

Annoying as they may be, keeping your OS current can protect you and your devices from known security holes that could go un-patched if you keep pushing off the update process. When you see those update notifications, you can often click on them to see just what new features and fixes are included. Often, with big updates like major OS changes, the security features can get overshadowed by flashy new design and functionality features.

That basic step should occur even if it takes a few moments away from a busy day. It is one of many things that people ought to do to help protect and defend their internet privacy in the digital age. A few other ideas include the following:

Deleting Old Files/Apps

Files or applications that linger without serving a use should go to the dustbin. It is easy to let things like that linger around because it does take some work to delete them out. However, you don’t want any viruses or other materials to latch onto an old file. Hackers know that human nature is such that we often don’t get around to deleting these old materials, and they sometimes specifically target older files like this for exactly that purpose. Don’t become a victim to that.

Never Download Untrusted Files

Companies promise a click to a personality quiz or getting your credit score, but it might be a trap. Do not download files or click on ads that you do not know and can verify the validity of. Once again, hackers target other bad actors. Indeed, you simply cannot allow a hackr to corrupt your entire computer.

Use a Password Manager

The lazy way of creating one password to use across all of your accounts is extremely dangerous. It exposes all of your accounts if a hacker cracks the password. Instead of doing that, please consider using a password manager. Create a strong password for the manager itself. Then, store all of your individual passwords for various websites and applications. This allows you to avoid forgetting your passwords or reusing them.

Learn More About Internet Privacy

Your privacy and online life matter and are highly valuable. Good and bad actors are after those details all the time. Thus, you must act in good faith to keep your materials protected and secure. Please contact us for the latest details about how to keep your internet privacy secure in 2021.

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