Is online anonymity important to you? How far are you willing to go to protect your privacy?
A report released by Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project says that most Internet users take some measures to cover their digital backsides, even though many believe that complete online anonymity remains out of reach. In a study, they interviewed 792 internet users and found that 86 percent have taken steps to erase the digital breadcrumbs of their online activity. The most common ways of doing this include: Clearing cookies and browser histories; deleting or editing something previously posted on a site or social network; setting browsers to disable or turn off cookies; and not using a Web site because it requests inputting a user’s real name.
Scientific American recently highlighted five techniques, including Tor, for keeping one’s Web activity from prying eyes. Using a virtual private network (VPN or proxy server such as Tor are more sophisticated, though less common ways to used by users to prevent firms from tracking online activity.
Obviously, a login and password are generally required to use most of social networking sites, e-mail services, online storages and other such online services. But that’s not enough; one must keep changing their passwords to protect account. For this reason, 2-step verification looks a better and more promising service which is currently provided by Google, Twitter, WordPress and some other sites.
Does the efforts to maintain online anonymity worth it? That depends on how much personal information any individual is going to disclose on internet. Online harassment, account hacking and frauds are common with peoples who don’t pay enough attention on their online security. Ages 18 to 29 are the most likely to have experienced one or more of these problems.
Most of social networking sites and other online services keep minimum age restriction to 18 years or so. Do these youngest users know what online security is or can able to differentiate between what is right and what is harmful to share online? Children get fascinated by Instagram, Twitter or other such tools and provide open access to their online security. The problem only exacerbate because kids own smart phones in the age when are not enough smart to handle it carefully.