How do you Protect your Online Privacy?

Recent news stories almost make the term ‘online privacy’ seem like an oxymoron. While it’s certainly disconcerting to recognize the amount of data leakage and mining taking place, don’t be discouraged. It’s not the time to throw in the towel when it comes to understanding and safeguarding your online privacy – it’s time to take action.

In 2010, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg famously announced that that how we look at privacy is changing, and that privacy is no longer “a social norm.” This comment was met with raised eyebrows then, and today studies are demonstrating that the world doesn’t agree. Research commissioned by Big Brother Watch, a UK-based civil liberties campaign group, has discovered that over three quarters of consumers globally are concerned about their privacy online.

If you’re a concerned citizen, you’re not alone. If you haven’t already, it’s time to take action and protect your online privacy. There are simple steps you can take to protect yourself online. We’ve already written about online privacy and social networks and protecting your mobile device. Here are a few more tips for enhancing online privacy.

Use the best tools.
First, make sure you’re using the best tools available. If you’re responsible for sharing confidential information online, you can’t always trust email and traditional file sharing methods to keep your documents safe. Consider a secure file-sharing provider to get the protection and capabilities you need.

Protect your browser.
Most browsers offer online privacy features built right in. eTrust has great resources on online protection, including a section on enabling privacy settings in your browser of choice.

Be mindful of what you share.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s always good to have a refresher. Always have a sober second thought when posting something online – do you want someone to know where you are based on your check-in or social post? Consider setting up a second email address that you use for online accounts, that way your primary account is left alone and you won’t be inundated with spam.

These tips really just scratch the surface when it comes to protecting your online security. While remaining anonymous online might not be possible, you can take steps today to protect you in the future.

What other steps are you taking to protect your online privacy? Let us know in the comments below.

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