Ladies and Gentlemen, esteemed visitors and new readers,
I am blogging tonight about privacy; Your privacy.
Lately, I have been keeping an eye on the media and the issues around online privacy. These issues range from company heads telling people to “get over it”, to cloud computing, (including web-based e-mail) and even Facebook’s new privacy features. Granted, most of the links are from a few sites, but they are issues that seriously concern me.
It comes to show that people are being just plain irresponsible with their personal information. People are obsessive…. about everything. If they have a place where they can post every little detail about their life, their friends lives and more… many people will. That’s why social networking sites exist. So your friends can see all of this stuff about you…. but what good is it to brag about something if it might cost you your future?
One by one, allow me to address these issues.
Company heads telling people to get over their breach of privacy
This is wrong on many levels. First, no corporation should ever say anything like this. The whole idea of a corporation is to keep the owners’ assets separate from a publically traded business. These company heads are sying that their information is more important than everyone elses. Second, selling or allowing access of someone’s personal details is like someone selling or giving away a company’s trade secrets. They’ll scream bloody murder, but you should get over us selling you out. Finally, why should everyone know that I occasionally search for new products to cure pimples on my back side, or whatever strange thing I want to know about? There are plenty of perfectly legal reasons to not want people to know what you are doing. So “get over it” ? I don’t think so, get over any company that spouts this garbage.
Are you nuts? Store all of your documents and data on someone else’s server? What if they have a security breach and you have your business plan in an online office suite? Some jerk breaks in, takes your business plan and makes a fortune off it…. while also pushing you out of the market because he was able to execute it faster with the profits made by stealing people’s credit card numbers. This is a bit off the wall, but it goes to show. You might think it’s no big deal to store your documents online, but it’s like storing your underwear in your front yard. Sure, probably not a big deal….but it can be real easy. If you want to get into the cloud. Get a server of your own and put the cloud there. Use a good Cloud server OS. Want online office capabilities? Look at Zimbra Open Source, and eyeOS (the next release is going to be real impressive). Take some responsibility, and keep your data safe, secure and accessible.
Those are just the most basic things. Keep in mind that once your info is out there …. it can be a lot of work to make it go away.
Don’t sell your privacy folks. I might not want to know about your obsession for googling for Gay Donkey Porn, but on the other hand do you want it to turn up in a Google search at some point?
Here are some tools to help out with privacy –
- Mozilla Firefox or Chromium Web Browser, they both have a safe browsing mode. IE does too, but you can’t verify their safety due to lack of community code auditing provided by open source.
- Scroogle – Secure, anonymous Google searching.
- and finally….most importantly…. not a download…. Common Sense!