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March 18, 2019

Digital Security: Be Careful What You Give Away

We are truly living in a digital world these days and there’s no sign of that changing any time soon. With the rise of the internet and growth of social media we are more connected than ever. Our entire lives are often put onto the web thanks to social media through images, life details, our addresses, etc. As incredible as this all is, it does come with some unfortunate consequences.

As more and more of our lives are accessible to anyone with an internet connection, it becomes easier than ever for those with malicious intentions to make use of it for their own ends. We’ve all heard the stories of people being stalked by someone who worked out where they live and like to go. Sometimes it’s because all the information was placed online and was easy to obtain. Other times there was just enough to allow an individual to work everything out for themselves.

It all comes down to the fact that many people are very careless with their information. For some reason there is a level of trust that is given when there is not much reason to. The recent developments with Facebook selling the information of its users is the perfect example. For years people have given out their data freely, and when asked why, many of them just shrug. It’s an incredible phenomenon, this level of trust and simple uncaring attitude.

Beyond Social Media

Social media isn’t the only place people are giving out trust for no real good reason. It’s come to light that many apps on our phones access the microphone and are actively listening in on our conversations. The reasoning behind this of course is that they want to be able to better serve relevant ads to you. Whether that’s acceptable or not comes down to the individual it seems, but it’s another example of how some just can’t be bothered to take some care with the accessibility they allow into their lives.

Whenever it comes to light that these things are going on, apps listening to us, social media selling data, etc, people become outraged. The simple truth of the matter is that if you don’t want your private data being sold off and sued by companies, or stolen by those up to no good, don’t put it out there. Think twice about posting your entire life onto Facebook so you’re not upset when your pictures end up being sold and used on a billboard. Stop blindly giving apps all the permissions they ask for; read what it is exactly they want and decline those you are uncomfortable with.

In other words: take as much care of yourself online as you would in everyday life. Take care with what you give away and pay attention to what you’re being asked for.


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