We all love the internet. It is just out there, waiting to come to our rescue. Access to information, reaching out to people, online shopping, binge-watching series- you name it, and we have our precious Internet at our service round the clock. It is all very fascinating, to say the least. However, have you ever wondered about the prices that we pay to avail such services? No, I am not talking about our monthly Internet plans or Netflix subscriptions. The Internet is costing us our privacy, without even our slightest idea. No amount of firewall and anti-malware protection can secure our virtual lives. Believe it or not, the internet is the biggest leak in our security.
We keep filling out information about ourselves, day in and day out, on social networking sites, e-forms and documents. Address, phone numbers, and other confidential information, in other words, our entire history, it is all there; but the question is, how secure are this information once we enter them? We upload photos that talk about our lives on Facebook and Instagram, and might even delete them if we feel like it. However, the question still begs, are they really ever erased from the Internet?
“Nothing is ever truly deleted”
There is reason enough to believe that once you fill in details about yourselves, browse something on the internet or upload a picture, it stays there for an indefinite period, even after you have deleted them. There is even reason enough to believe that “nothing is ever truly deleted from the internet.” This poses a serious question about our privacy. If all our information which was once uploaded on the internet cannot ever be deleted, then how safe are we? Anyone with hacking skills (and there are many) can break into our sensitive information and use them against us, for whatever reason. There are software and apps that can easily retrieve deleted photos of us.
What can be done to secure or delete confidential data from the Internet?
With constant news flowing in every day about the internet making us vulnerable to cyber crimes and data leaks, it is but normal to harbour feelings of insecurities. We have multiple social media accounts, and other online accounts where our information is stored and our pictures are uploaded. It is thus, natural to want to delete them all for good from the Internet in an attempt to stay protected. However, with the world evolving in leaps and bounds, it is nearly impossible to stay away from the World Wide Web phenomenon. We now need it for our survival; and in all honesty, trying to delete information about oneself permanently from the internet is but a fool’s errand. However, that does not mean that we should not adopt basic precautions and keep our guards low.
Deleting the browser history at regular intervals is a good way to start protecting oneself from cyber crimes. Our browser holds tremendous amounts of information about ourselves and our searches, which is why it is always advisable to clear the browser history. Next, you could use your antivirus protection software to turn off browsers from storing your personal data. The other way to keep yourself protected is by requesting Google to remove you from any searches that hold your personal information.
Thus, there are always ways to stay protected and armed in spite of all the cyber threats and security leaks around us. All that is required is awareness, tact, and patience.