Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Surf with Team 1 - How private are you online?

Surf with Team 1 - How private are you online?

Welcome to read the 2nd edition of Surf with Team 1

A slow start but, it will be a steady and sustained journey. I promise you that.

My idea is to keep these short editions as simple as possible. Today, I would like to discuss with you an important topic related to online privacy.

How private are you Online?

These days when every other person has a google or Face Book account, the option to remain private is becoming lesser and lesser. Even if, you do not reveal your personal contact details or email addresses to a person of unknown identity, through various means he could collect those details about you from your name.

Your regular interactions on the web, the small bits and pieces of data left over on website, groups and other online social sites like Facebook, Twitter and Flickr are oceans of personal information, which ultimately lead from one to another to pin point to reach a person’s identity. Professional from the Information Technology field says that such seemingly harmless bits of self-revelation can easily be collected and compiled by computers to help create a picture of a person’s identity.

Although social networking sites allow users to increase their defence against search and identification by opting tight privacy controls of personal profile, an individual’s actions, rarely protect them and their privacy in the interconnected world of the Internet.

In many cases, even if you do not disclose your personal information, your online friends and colleagues may do it unknowingly for you, referring to your school, college, employer, gender, location and interests. These patterns and style of communications many times reveal a persons interest and identity very easily. Therefore these days, Personal privacy is no longer an individual item. As experts say, in today’s online world, what your mother told you is true, “people really can judge you by your friends.”. A study of a person and his leniency combined together, will give you a pool of information about an individual with a distinctive “social signature".

No wonder, in the recent times we read often about missing persons being found out and family and friends lost many years ago being reconnected. It is also not a new thing that day by day more controversies are spurning out, just like wild fire as and when a small issue or talk or a tweet happens by a celebrity and we see it being twisted and totally reconfigured by interested parties to tarnish the image of the persons who initiated it.

Therefore, when you’re online, it’s better to behave as if you’re doing it in public — because definitely, it is..

Ramesh Menon

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