Online privacy, its rising concerns and how to perfect it

Online privacy, its rising concerns and how to perfect it

Online privacy, its rising concerns and how to perfect it

Online privacy and its rising concerns and how to perfect it

The issue of digital privacy has been one which worries both Dick and Harry, the amount of internet users ‘ private details which are compromised when they access the internet have been one which scares all. Online or Digital privacy has to do with how much personal, private and financial data remains personal when you access the internet.  The issue of online privacy have been played down by many of which their ruin came after. From September 2021, the loss of internet privacy has sky rocketed hence the need to find a means of perfecting digital privacy.

You understand how critical digital privacy is when you take an inventory of how many things you are willing to give out  to a stranger,  how willing are you to make your medical records bank transactions  and all those things become public documents?.

A research carried out on American internet users has it that 81% of respondents believed they had no control over data collected by private companies. Even worse,  the number climbed to 84% when people were asked if they could control what data the government collected.

Online privacy issues range from the information you don’t mind sharing (say, a public social media account) and annoying privacy trade-offs like targeted ads to public embarrassment or breaches that affect your personal life.


Let’s look at the most controversial, privacy-invading practices.

Search engines user tracking

Search engines log not only things you’ve been looking for. They also track websites that you visit after that. If your search engine provider doubles as a browser, they keep all your browsing history, too.


Search engines can (and do) collect:

  • Search history
  • Cookies
  • IP addresses
  • Click-through history

Taken together, this information can be used for “profiling”, or making a customer persona based on the person’s browsing, shopping, and social media preferences. Among other things, customer personas are widely used in personalizing ads. Profiling becomes a serious privacy issue, though, when data-matching algorithms associate someone’s profile with their personally identifiable information, as this might lead to data breaches.

Social media data harvesting

In recent years, social media privacy hit the spotlight after a string of scandals, including the Cambridge Analytical story when they used data to manipulate voters, cyberbullying, and “doxing” (sharing private information publicly).


On top of that, major social networks have suffered data breaches, leaving millions of users exposed. A recent example is Facebook’s massive data breach that exposed the personal data of 533 million users, including their full names, phone numbers, locations, birth dates, bios, and email addresses.

Cookies/online tracking

For the most part, cookies are harmless and even helpful. These pieces of code collect your browsing information and let websites remember your login, preferences, language settings, and other details.  


However, cookies might become a concern when it comes to vast amounts of data collected without user consent.  

 In December 2020, France’s data protection regulator, the Commission Nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL), ruled that Google and Amazon had to pay 121 million dollars and 35 million euros for breaching Article 82 of the French Data Protection Act. CNIL fined both companies for placing tracking cookies on their user’s computers without prior consent. Google went even further and tracked users who had deactivated ad personalization.

Loss of online privacy whose resulting effects is data breaches has caused many businesses and individuals great havoc, some of which include  but not by any chance limited to the following


Revenue Loss

Significant revenue loss as a result of a security breach is common. Studies show that 29% of businesses that face a data breach end up losing revenue. Of those that lost revenue, 38% experienced a loss of 20% or more.

A non-functional website, for example, may cause potential customers to explore other options. But any IT system downtime can lead to work disruptions.

 Damage to Brand Reputation

A security breach can impact much more than just your short-term revenue. The long-term reputation of your brand is at stake as well.

For one, you don’t necessarily want your emails leaked. In most cases, you need these emails to remain private.

However, customers value their privacy, too  and breaches often involve customer payment information. Potential leads will be hesitant to trust a business with a history of shoddy data security.

Loss of Intellectual Property

Loss of revenue and damaged reputation can be catastrophic. However, in some cases, hackers will also target designs, strategies, and blueprints.

Businesses within the manufacturing and construction industries are more prone to this threat. Smaller businesses tend to believe they won’t get hit. But 60% of hacks target small businesses. This is because they’re easier to attack.

Losing intellectual property can impact the competitiveness of your business. Some rivals would not hesitate to take advantage of stolen information.

 Hidden Costs

Surface-level costs are just the beginning. There are many hidden costs related to breaches as well.

For instance, legal fees may come into play. Also, you may need to spend more on PR and investigations, not to mention insurance premium hikes.

Regulatory fines are another reality that many businesses overlook. In 2015, for example, the FCC slammed AT&T with a $25 million fine. This was a result of a breach that led to the disclosure of information related to thousands of accounts.

Online Vandalism

Some hackers fancy themselves as pranksters. In these cases, a security breach might only lead to few word changes on your website.

While this seems relatively harmless, it can actually cause a lot of damage. Subtle changes are harder to notice.

For example, a hacker might change a few letters or numbers on your contact page. They may also add vulgar content to some of your webpages.

Here are some of the best way to check breaches in online privacy

Use Unique, Strong Passwords

This may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many people still use “password” as their password or something easy to guess, like “1234567.”

It’s wise to use unique passwords for all the websites you visit. This makes it more challenging for hackers to access your personal information, which may be linked to your financial institution.

It’s also a smart idea to change your passwords frequently. You can keep them written down on paper in a safe place, where only you have access to it.

 Opt for Two-Factor Authentication

Many internet services have two-factor authentication setting options, like Google, Apple and even social media platforms like Twitter. This requires two forms of authentication from the user to gain access to your data.

For example, users may need to enter a numeric password and a code they receive via SMS text or email. This increases the quality of protection for your various online accounts and makes it that much harder for hackers to find their way in.

Rather than clicking the “forgot password” prompt on your login pages, you can use two-factor authentication to ensure your accounts are secure.

 Avoid Spam, Untrustworthy Links or Emails

It may be challenging for people who lack crucial digital literacy skills to distinguish spam from trustworthy links. Often, older generations who lack technological knowledge may fall victim to opening these links that contain viruses or various forms of malware.

One sign you can look for in spam links is significant typos — authentic companies commonly check their spelling to ensure there are no typos or errors. In addition, avoid opening links from emails you don’t recognize. This is another tactic hackers use to take advantage of internet users.

Lastly, consider using online link checking sites, like ScanURL or URLVoid. It may save you time and effort in the long run.

 Update Your Devices Often

Most devices and security software come out with frequent system updates to fix patches and any security issues they may identify.

Activating automatic updates on your smartphone and laptop is a perfect way to ensure your devices have the latest software patches so you can be secure online.

Whether you use Microsoft, Apple or another operating system, be sure to check if your automatic updates are set to “on.” That way, you won’t have to worry about system updates in the future.

Beware of Public Wi-Fi

It’s wise to avoid using public Wi-Fi at all times because anyone can access guest networks. Though they may be convenient, they’re often not secure and can make you vulnerable to would-be hackers.

However, there are some things you can do if you’re in a pinch and need to use public Wi-Fi. Consider encrypting your information  by using VPN apps or relying on a mobile hotspot. This will protect your data.

In addition, avoid accessing your personal information or visiting any financial institution’s websites. It’s also possible to download browser add-ons or plug-ins to help protect your information when using public Wi-Fi networks.

 Use Antivirus Software

There are plenty of online antivirus programs you can download to fend off potential virus threats on your computer. While free versions are available, you may want to consider paying for a better-quality program that will protect your data.

Cyber risks continue to emerge and evolve, so staying ahead of the curve will prove beneficial for you. Antivirus programs can help secure your identity from hackers trying to steal your information, including your bank account or Social Security numbers.

Like most operating systems, antivirus software performs regular updates to fix any security holes so you can rest assured your information is safe.

Don’t Share Personal Information Online

Phone numbers, Social Security numbers, bank account information and addresses are some prime examples of what not to share online.

The more information you share, the more you open yourself up to potential threats and risks. By limiting the data you put out there, you’re doing yourself a favor.

While some information needs to be shared, try your best to only do so with trusted, reliable people or websites.

  1. Sign up for Login Alerts

Many companies now use alert notifications when unknown devices log in to your accounts. For example, streaming services like Netflix and Hulu will email you if an unrecognized source requests access.

It’s crucial to sign up for these account alerts to stay on top of any security risks. They will also tell you where your account was accessed. With this security layer, it’s also wise to consider changing your password to prevent further issues.

We spend so much time online to stay connected to our loved ones, shop and more. It’s critical to use preventive security measures to lessen the threats we face today.

Surf the Web Securely

While some large-scale hacks are unavoidable for the average consumer, you can employ best practices to stay secure online and protect your data from cybercriminals. Be sure to follow the steps above so you can continue using the internet safely and set your mind at ease. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

In Conclusion

The need that privacy of Netizns should be perfected when they surf through online products or web pages is one that is of utmost concern, most homes have been broken, most businesses have hit the squalls, most relationship has been ruined, some people or groups have become enemies over night; all these effects and more can be traced to just a single breach of privacy which may have been averted by the company or individual users. We all have a role to play to ensure that this dream where users are free from sharing private materials online comes to pass so let’s work towards it taken the above listed precautions and some others you can find through surfing the internet.

At Digiweb Developers Company we offer software solutions to businesses and users at a considerate price and we anticipate your call today, we will help you not just to thrive but to soar so reach out to us today.

For comments and enquiry or contribution to the above article please drop it in the comment section below and certainly we will get back to you.





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