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Study Shows Most Not Serious About Online Privacy

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Everyone yearns for security and privacy on the web but are you doing your bit to protect your data and personal information? Contrary to popular belief, a lot of people are now aware of the privacy challenges associated with the internet yet they do almost nothing to protect themselves from such threats. This was confirmed by a recent study conducted by Trend Micro Inc. which highlighted how people are jeopardizing their data, money and identity through sheer negligence, lazy behavior and risky habits. The study was commissioned by the Dallas based security company to coincide with the launch of its latest security product, Internet Security 2015, and we have to say that we are not at all surprised by its results.

According to the information published by Trend Micro, people participating in the study admitted to indulging in dangerous activities like browsing malicious sites, installing dangerous apps on their mobile devices and allowing dubious mobile apps to access their social accounts. As per the study, 67% internet users allowed their browsers to save their critical passwords, 40% mobile users didn’t use a password to lock their devices and 10% people admitted to downloading and installed dangerous apps on their mobile devices. This clearly shows that although people are well-informed about online security threats, they are far too careless to do anything about it.

The study also gives a revealing peek into how people are compromising their security, privacy and identity through social media. According to another set of results published by the company, 74% of online users admitted of being worried while sharing data through social media while 60% people revealed that they have deleted one or more posts from their social networking accounts out of fear of how the message(s) could affect their personal lives. What’s more interesting is that despite being aware of the security threats posed by the social media, 28% of respondents allowed third party apps to gather data from their social media profiles! This again shows that while people worry about their privacy all the time, they are too complacent to take any preventive or corrective action.

If you really want 100% security and privacy on the web then you must get rid of your lazy habits and reckless behavior that could jeopardize your data. Stop visiting dangerous websites, do not use the same password across multiple websites and most important of all, stop trusting websites and app publishers blindly. In addition, you must also use a dedicated internet security tool to protect yourself from malicious links and apps, phishing attacks and identity theft. Most anti-virus softwares now include a built-in security tool to counter web based attacks but there are many excellent standalone internet security tools available as well (including Internet Security 2015 from Trend Micro). We also recommend that you start using a Virtual Private Network to protect yourself from the surveillance activities carried out by your government, bypass censorship at workplaces or in foreign countries as well as to secure your data from snoopers and hackers lurking at public Wi-Fi hotspots.

January 14, 2015

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