My internet security

Honestly, my approach to digital security has always been a bit lackluster. I use a similar password for everything (which I probably shouldn’t be sharing here), and I also save most of my passwords to my computer or phone. I rarely use incognito mode, many of my social media accounts are public, and I don’t have any encryption on my devices. These are all things I vaguely knew I should be doing, but I did not realize how important these things were until I did the readings.

I thought the Business insider piece on national security was quite interesting. The idea that giving up our personal information to protect national security actually seemed crazy to me, as I have never thought my information, in any way shape or form, would benefit our security or the government. Additionally, the Microsoft CEO saying it’s a mistake to give up that information is also surprising. His words made me realize how essential our privacy can be. Having grown up in an era where everything is online, I have never really assumed I had privacy, nor have I made a large effort to try and remain private. Satya Nadella’s words were quite thought-provoking, and make me want to begin to develop a more private online presence.

Additionally, the Washington Post article on internet extensions and selling of data was something I knew nothing about previously. I use web extensions on Firefox, including Grammarly, Chartbeat, and Tabagochi (highly recommend), as well as others, to make my internet usage more efficient. To know that those extensions (though after researching, I think I’m good) could have sold my clicks and information to companies for their own profit really frustrates me. I know that no one reads the terms and conditions, which probably benefits this practice, but it just seems incredibly unethical and inconsiderate to be doing this to consumers who want to use your product. When leaks or hacks occur from these extensions, it puts thousands of people’s information at risk, completely violating so many basic rights we take for granted.

Just from these few articles alone, there are security habits of mine that I know need some sort of change. For one, I need to protect my passwords better, as I would really hate to be hacked and lose my information. Additionally, I will likely update my privacy settings on certain social media. For example, I use my twitter for 90% journalistic purposes, so that will remain public, but my TikTok and Facebook, which I tend to post on less frequently, may get some increased privacy on my end. I’m not sure, honestly, that I will encrypt things, but I will certainly look into it. But, I will absolutely do more research on extensions before I download them. I had no idea extensions selling info was an issue, and I feel like that is something I will 100% look for in the future.