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February 27, 2020

Why Does Digital Privacy Matter?

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What does privacy mean to you? For most, the word conjures up images of closed curtains and hushed conversations. However, a new type of privacy has come to life. It is, of course, digital privacy. Unfortunately, many people don’t understand what the term entails. They also don’t know why digital privacy matters. Let’s take a look.

  • What is digital privacy?
  • Uses of my online data
  • Why does my online privacy matter?
  • How do I protect it?

What is Digital Privacy?

In most cases, the term “digital privacy” refers to how individuals and organizations protect information used or created online. This information takes many forms. For example, login details, medical data, and contact info are all things users may want to keep private. Privacy comes about as a result of using digital best practices. Visiting only HTTPS encrypted websites and using strong passwords are two examples of best practices.

Uses of My Online Data

Often, internet users don’t properly protect their information because they don’t know how it can harm their privacy. In order to avoid this, it’s crucial to understand just how your data can be used. Of course, there are too many uses to list all of them. But a few include:

  • To Commit Fraud: If a hacker steals private, online information like your SSN number, they can use it to steal your identity and commit fraud.
  • To Steal Your Money: If you use online banking, your account must be secured by a strong password. If you use a weak one, it may be hacked. In this event, a hacker can drain your account before you even notice.
  • To Access Medical Information: A lot of medical information is stored online. If stolen, it can have serious consequences for your privacy. For example, someone could commit medical fraud. Your insurance company may also deny service.
  • To Advertise: Many companies can, legally, use your data to send you tailored advertisements.
  • To Hire: In some cases, a business will examine your social media accounts to decide whether or not to hire you. Strong privacy settings on your accounts can prevent this.
  • To Wreak Havoc: Sometimes, hackers simply want your information to make life difficult for you. They can fill your computer with malware or annoy you with spam.

Why Does My Online Privacy Matter?

Even the least private person needs some measure of privacy in their life. More than just being a want, privacy is a need. It keeps us safe in a world increasingly relying on citizen data. Data privacy protects our money, jobs, and way of life. Every person’s privacy needs differ so to make sure you’re protected, ask yourself what privacy means to you.

How Do I Protect It?

In order to maintain your digital privacy, there are certain steps you can take:

  • Use Strong Passwords: The stronger your password, the less likely it is to be hacked. Use these tips to create a strong password.
  • Double Check Your Social Settings: In order to prevent your private content from being visible to everyone, strengthen the privacy settings on your social media accounts.
  • Increase Your Device Security: A poorly protected device can lead to stolen data. Use antivirus software and a firewall to keep your data safe.
  • Use a VPN: A VPN creates a secure connection between your device and the websites you visit. It keeps your online activities safe from prying eyes.

So, what does digital privacy mean to you?

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