Have you ever really thought about how much data you are sharing online each day? If so, you know that maintaining your online privacy isn’t easy. Governments, corporations, and cybercriminals are working to eliminate the small amount of privacy that internet users have left.
Today, this concern is more prevalent than before. From allegations of surveillance to election interference in the past and even unauthorized data access, there are all sorts of infringements on your right to privacy that appear daily.
While there is a lot of information about digital security and privacy out there, it isn’t all good. Get to know some of the most common online privacy myths – and the truth about them below.
Myth: Hackers Will Only Target the Wealthy and VIPs
While high-value targets appeal to hackers, most prefer casting a much wider net and taking advantage of anyone they can find. To understand why you may be a target, you should know that scammers and hackers aren’t always trying to get the largest bank account out there. If they can access a mid-level employee’s files where there are sensitive trade secrets, they can then blackmail the company or even sell the documents to your competition.
They can also infect thousands of users with bots that can be used to harness and then launch DDoS and hold websites for ransom. It is even possible to manipulate social media accounts. They do this to sell fake likes to unscrupulous marketers or give fake social media accounts to a group of friends to make them seem legitimate.
This means anyone is and can be a target. When hackers try to hit as many users as they can, everyone is a target.
Myth: Private or Incognito Mode will Help You Stay Anonymous
Some of the most popular internet browsers offer private browsing mode; however, the level of privacy provided is low. While this is true, these browsers are usually upfront about the limitations and capabilities of the private modes – but who really reads this information?
Put simply, these modes are designed to keep your browser from collecting cookies. This is what sites use to track you. While that is a good start, it isn’t enough if you want to remain anonymous. Websites may still fingerprint users, identify visitors’ IP addresses, and send tracking pixels to their cache.
Myth: If You Use the Private Setting on Facebook, Only Friends Can Access Your Data
Facebook offers a lot of privacy and different security settings. However, they don’t all provide the security you think you are getting. You need to make sure you fully understand these privacy settings’ capabilities since they aren’t all as comprehensive as they may seem at first.
Are You Really Keeping Your Information Private?
As you can see from the myths here, there are many situations where you may think your information is private and protected, but it really isn’t. Be sure you fully understand privacy settings and make sure you work with the professionals when necessary to ensure a higher level of security.