WITH almost 28 million Filipinos actively logging in to Facebook every day (the Philippines ranking 8th Facebook user by country, according to www.socialbakers.com) and sharing the most mundane to the most intimate details of their lives, security experts are campaigning for data privacy awareness. Trend Micro joins the National Cyber Security Alliance and several other notable institutions in celebrating Data Privacy Day to champion data security.
“Privacy is our individual responsibilities. We cannot always expect or assume that Internet service providers and web site administrators will take care of our privacy for us. We need to evolve into vigilant digital citizens,” Myla Pilao, Trend Micro director for Core Technology Marketing said.
“For 2012, Trend Micro believes that the new social networking generation will redefine privacy. Our concept of online privacy constantly changes along with various shifts in technology. Providing information has become so convenient that most people no longer know how much information they reveal and to whom,” Pilao added.
Trend Micro shares the following tips to protect your privacy while browsing the Web:
- Regularly delete cookies. Cookies store site-related information that may be stolen for cybercriminal use. Deleting cookies can have a downside though, as doing so will require you to re-enter your user name and password every time you access a site.
- Consider private browsing. Browsers offer this special mode as a means to keep your online activities secret from prying eyes. Opting for private browsing opens a new browser session that deletes its history and cookies as soon as you close the window. Note though that this does not guarantee anonymity because while your browser window remains open, it still allows advertisers to track your activities.
- Use the NAI’s opt-out tool. This tool allows you to opt out of being “targeted” by customized ads. As an organization that promotes online advertising self-regulation, the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI) allows you to opt out of advertising promotions its member companies run. As such, you will no longer be bothered by tailor-made ads companies you chose to block dole out.
- Explore your social-networking account’s privacy settings. Edit your privacy settings so that only your contacts can view the information you post. You can even customize this further and choose specific people who can view certain sections of your public wall. Unless you are a business entity, it is best not to set your account to “Public.”
- Check the permissions you grant the mobile apps you install. Make sure that the access permissions requested by the mobile app you are trying to install are reasonable and are required by the app to function. Be suspicious if an app appears to be asking for access to more functionalities as this can be an indication that the app is malicious.
“In the same way that we safeguard the keys to our cars and our houses to protect those that are precious to us, the key to accessing our personal information is our responsibility. The bottom line is: it’s your data, it’s your life.” said Pilao.