DEFINITION OF ONLINE P R I VAC Y Internet privacy consists of privacy over the media of the Internet: theability to control what information one reveals about oneself over theInternet, and to control who can access that information. Many peopleuse the term to mean universal Internet privacy: every user of the Internetpossessing Internet privacy.Internet privacy forms a subset of computer privacy. Experts in the fieldof Internet privacy have a consensus that Internet privacy does not reallyexist. Privacy advocates believe that it should exist
#1 DON’T REVEAL PERSONAL I N F O R M AT I O N Most people are sharing personal information that almost anyone can find without even knowing it. You should use a fake name except if you need to do banking or your e-mail. Don’t give information to pop-ups or any sort of advertisement. Don’t leave your internet on at night because you may get viruses or people will hack into your internet and get information.
# 2 U S E C O O K I E M A N AG E M E N T S O F T WA R E Cookies are tidbits of information that websites store on yourcomputer. They also may be passwords or user ID’s so you don’thave to keep typing them when you load a new page. Most cookiescan only be read by whoever created them. Cookies track everythingthat you do on your computer.
#3 DON’T REVEAL PERSONAL INFORMATION TO STRANGERS OR JUST MET FRIENDS You should be careful with who you talk to online. Some peoplecould make accounts pretending to be your friend when it could beanybody. You should talk to your friends and create a passcode thatyou say at the beginning of your conversations so you know it’s them.It’s not a good idea to go out and meet face to face with someone youdon’t know but talk to online.
#4 BEWARE OF SITES THAT OFFER R E WA R D S O R P R I Z E S I N E XC H A N G E F O R YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION They use your information for direct marketing purposes. Oncemarketers have your information they sell it to other marketers andit’s a long chain that doesn’t end quickly. Be especially wary ofsweepstakes and contests. You probably wont win, but the marketersure will if you give them your information.
# 5 D O N ’ T R E P LY TO S PA M M E R S Spam on your e-mail is something your probably aware with. Thissimply confirms that your address is being read by a real person, andyoull find yourself on dozens more spammers lists in no time. If youhave a good Internet service provider, you may be able to forwardcopies of spam e-mail to the system administrators who can route acomplaint to the ISP of the spammer.
#6 BE CAUTIOUS OF WEB SECURITY Never submit a credit card number or other highly sensitivepersonal information without first making sure your connection issecure. In any browser, look at the URL (Web address) line - a secureconnection will begin "https://" instead of "http://". If you are atpage that asks for such information but shows "http://" try addingthe "s" yourself and hitting enter to reload the page. Your browseritself gives away information about you, if your IP address.
#7 BE CONSCIOUS OF HOME COMPUTER SECURITY Your own computer may be a trouble spot for Internet security. If you have aDSL line, broadband cable modem or other connection to the Internet that is upand running 24 hours be sure to turn your computer off. System crackers search forvulnerable, unattended DSL-connected home computers, and can invade them withsurprising ease, rifling through files looking for credit card numbers or othersensitive data, or even "taking over" the computer and quietly using it for their ownpurposes, such as launching attacks on other computers elsewhere - attacks youcould initially be blamed for. Firewall hardware and software is another option thatcan protect you from these kinds of attacks.
#9 RE ME MB E R T HAT YOU D E CID E W HAT IN FORMAT ION AB OUT YOURSE L F T O REVEAL Dont give out personally-identifiable information too easily. Just asyou might think twice about giving some clerk at the mall your homeaddress and phone number, keep in mind that simply because a site asksfor or demands personal information from you does not mean you haveto give it. You do have to give accurate billing information if you arebuying something, of course, but if you are registering with a free site thatis a little too nosy for you, there is no law against providing them withpseudonymous information.
#10 USE ENCRYPTION! Last but certainly not least, there are other privacy threats besides abusivemarketers, nosy bosses, spammers and scammers. Some of the threats includeindustrial espionage, government surveillance, identity theft, disgruntledformer associates, and system crackers. Relatively easy-to-use e-mail and fileencryption software is available for free, such as Pretty Good Privacy(PGP, available at: HREF="http://www.pgpi.org/">http://www.pgpi.org/), which runs on almost all computers and even integrates seamlessly withmost major e-mail software.