Safeguarding of Privacy In An Era of Security Breaches
Privacy is important, but it can sometimes feel like a fleeting concept. In a world where various aspects of our personal data are held in large data stores, seemingly just waiting to be discovered by unauthorized infiltrators. The year 2017 has already gone down into history books globally for the massive amount of cybersecurity breaches and attacks that occurred, with many targets being large, well-known companies.
Equifax, for example, suffered one of the most publicized cyber breaches that continue to make waves. One of the key disappointments in this particular situation (not including the obvious breach of highly-sensitive data), is the fact that the renowned credit reporting agency allegedly kept the breach a secret for multiple months. More than one hundred million stores of individual personal information were affected, and that alone should be more than enough for individuals to resign themselves to holding more personal power over how their personal data is handled and accessed.
Below are three simple, yet effective tips for safeguarding your personal data privacy:
1. Be Proactive
While it may be comforting to believe that well-funded large companies and governments that we have no choice but to share our personal data with, will have robust resources in place to protect against the possibility of that data leaking, it is also a bit sadly naive. You, as an individual, have more power than you may be giving yourself credit for, and it is high-time that this power is reclaimed to leave the fate of your most sensitive information in your own hands.
Eric J. Anderson, Founder, and CEO of Promether believes strongly in the importance of removing expectations from companies and governments to keep your own best interests in mind. According to Anderson, “If you are waiting for a company to save you, you wait indefinitely. They can’t save you and they can’t save themselves.” With global legislation still trails behind the most significant cybersecurity threats we face on a daily basis, individuals are tasked with reclaiming culpability for their personal data, educating themselves on the threats, researching efficient solutions, and make concerted efforts to keep holding on to the reigns.
2. Keep Personal Information Close To The Vest
How often have you visited a website to conduct some kind of inessential business, and you are asked for personal information going further than just your name and address? For many of us, the answer is “much too often,” and this is a prime opportunity to begin utilizing the first tip. We have a lot of personal information that does need to be shared with relevant agencies and to conduct certain business services, but the key is to become more mindful of who actually needs to receive that information directly from you.
Make it a habit to keep your most sensitive close to your chest, especially identifying information that could be pieced together to access passwords and security questions. Not everyone deserves to know everything, and you have every right to question the “Why” behind the request, as well as to seek action from relevant governing bodies that may need to tighten the reins on how certain businesses and websites operate.
3. Make Encryption Your Friend
For many that aren’t necessarily technologically-savvy, just the word “encryption” can sound like a jumble of letters spelling out a codeword that you find it hard to decipher. Encryption, to put very simply, is the process of changing information into codes that are undecipherable by anyone other than the individuals authorized to access it. Of course, the potential is great and there are a number of solutions that exist to do this work for you without the need for in-depth knowledge of how the nitty-gritty of encryption works.
Promether, for example, harnesses blockchain technology to add extra layers of security to your methods of communication. With a focus on anonymity and security using a decentralized privacy network to make connections across networks, the threat of cyber surveillance is virtually eliminated.
Your most sensitive personal data is seemingly always at risk of being exposed to unscrupulous elements that have the potential to irreparably damage your life. Your personal data privacy is one that is essential to always keep as a priority in mind. There are a number of simple actions and solutions that can be employed to ensure data privacy. You hold your data privacy in your own hands, and it’s up to you to keep ahold of the reins.