Mark Zuckerberg said ‘privacy is dead’. In our online world the notion of privacy is a quaint one. However, while we may have lost much of our privacy with all of our online and social media activity—we still have data security. And it is up to us how our data is used, and how to protect your privacy online.
Online security is important. Knowing facts about your data security is the first step. Only after you know about the importance of securing your data, and how your data is available online, can you manage your online protection. Keep in mind of course, data safety isn’t only for you, it’s for you and your family. After reading the information below we advise you to check people search sites like this one to see what information is accessible about you online. It is important to know what private data is out there to manage that info.
So, let’s look at some facts:
Fact #1: Cybercriminals are one of the FBI’s top priorities
When we think of the FBI’s ‘most wanted’ we think mafia bosses and serial killers. Topping many of their lists of most-wanted criminals however are cyber criminals. They can gain critical personal information—especially financial—which can potentially fund ill-mannered organizations. While for the end user it can be a non-dangerous inconvenience, the end result will be detrimental at the national level. If the FBI is so carefully tracking cyber data security—so should you in terms of how to protect your privacy online.
Fact #2: Malware increase annually
We often think of malware as either something of the past, or something our computer’s built-in security system has eradicated. The truth is, it is on the rise—and increases every year. Spyware, malware, ransomware and viruses are prevalent, and can steal your personal information. 2017 alone saw an increase in 54% of Malware according to Symantec’s Internet Security Threat Report. The same report in 2018 registers a dramatic 30% increase in the amount of ransomware infections on mobile devices, putting one in 36 mobile devices at risk of leaking their owner’s personal data due to malicious mobile apps installed. According to Symantech, in 2018 they blocked over 10.5k malicious mobile apps per day, most of them being tools, lifestyle, and entertainment apps! So it’s important not to underestimate this threat as malware and ransomware are continually on the rise.
Fact #3: Apps are a huge data security issue
Downloading Candy Crush and the newest filter is innocuous, right? Turns out, it isn’t. There is a large percentage of data sent via apps. The problem is that third-party apps (ones not made by your operating system) are made by independent developers. And these developers can be in any country, developing software just to give you a fun free game—however, nothing is free. The free apps are in it for a purpose such as data or advertising.
Check out this link for more info on mobile data security.
Fact #4: Billions are spent on data security
The US government alone spends over $15billion on cyber security. If that doesn’t tell you it is important, then nothing will. And this spending is going up, not down. The department of defense alone spends over $8billion.
Fact #5: Your devices can leak data too
Most of us have security on our laptops, and many on our phones—but what about our internet-enabled devices? Your Google Nest, Echos and Alexa’s are internet enabled, and internet devices are designed to gather data—especially ones that cater to your needs. Your Echo is gathering data to help serve you better…but it also gathers data. You have a client profile with all of your devices that connect to the internet. In fact, your internet-enabled device can be hacked in as little as five minutes.
Fact #6: It is trillions of dollars in damage
Cyber security and online data collection is minor right? Turns out, no. The online cyber security world in the US alone is $6trillion dollars. And while you may be picturing that being attacks on global corporations (which is true), a decent percentage of that is personal.
Fact #7: Most Cybercrime isn’t reported
Sadly, only about 10% of cybercrime is reported. This unfortunate statistic means that most offenders are free to repeat their efforts. As a society, the best thing we can do is to report cybercrimes. The first effort of that is to find out your current online status in terms of available information and how to protect your privacy online, then to find anyone abusing that available information.
Fact #8: Incredible Data Breaches
Data breaches aren’t a pie-in-the-sky concept that happens to others, they happen—and they happen to people like you. Yahoo! has had 3 billion accounts hacked, Equifax has had over 140million accounts hacked, LinkedIn 100million, Facebook 50million, and Home Depot over 50 million. Home Depot, that’s right. Your information is vulnerable no matter what platform you put it on.
Fact #9: People can hack your information for a dollar
Hacking information isn’t just high-tech hackers working on billion-dollar companies. People can find hacking toolkits for as low as a dollar. ONE dollar. With a quick, cursory internet search you can find apps that can hack information.
Fact #10: Emails aren’t safe
Emails are a daily routine for many and, as such, are unremarkable…right? Well, emails are still one of the biggest sources of cyber security threats. While an email to your aunt about a new recipe you found might sound harmless, information in your emails can be enough to either steal your identity or be malicious in another way.
Online data security is a critical issue, and only becoming more important. You’ve already taken the first step, to learn the importance of it. The second step is to learn what data of yours is online. Check out people search sites to see what personal information is available online in terms of data security. Once you know what information is online you can begin to cater it to your desired security level.