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5 Online Privacy and Security Myths 

Posted On     Wednesday, June 30th, 2021

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When it comes to internet surveillance, there are many tips on how to protect yourself and consolidated truths among common mobile and home internet users. But is everything that is said about the theme true? 


For truly safe browsing, it’s important to know not only where to start protecting yourself, but also how to avoid practices that compromise security. In other words: it is essential to know the traditional myths and ensure that their protection is continuous.

1) “Anonymized” data is really anonymous

A common and recommended practice by many governments when it comes to using data for service delivery and process design is anonymization. In this routine, a dataset is processed and modified to remove all points that could lead to the direct identification of a person. 


Thus, services such as targeted advertising can profile a person without necessarily knowing exactly who they are. But this process is not always able to make the user invisible to third parties. 


With a large set of records (updated and diverse), it is often possible to reverse-engineer to find a particular person in a pile of data. Therefore, the only way to really have anonymity guaranteed on the web is to block the collection of personal information. 

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2) Security is a synonymous of Privacy

Many people confuse the concepts of privacy and security on the web. However, these are different concepts and, as a rule, having access to one of them will not imply another. In other words: to have a reliable and robust browsing, it is crucial to understand what these terms really mean. 


Online privacy is related to the ability to use internet services without being directly identified. The concept deals with the low (or null) collection of information from online users. 


Digital security, on the other hand, involves keeping information in safe environments and protected against illegal use by third parties. In other words, this term is linked to maintaining the integrity, inviolability and availability of private information.

3) Hackers only look for famous people

Another traditional myth when we talk about privacy and security on the internet is that we are protected because we are not people of public interest. But this is a serious mistake and can expose general users to situations where personal passwords and credit card numbers are leaked. 


In the modern environment, the biggest attacks focus on the amount of information obtained and not just on who owns it. Hackers seek to reach businesses of all sizes and profiles, as well as ordinary people, by breaking into devices, redirecting access to fake pages or even directly stealing data. 


Getting lots of records allows for the creation of large databases, which are sold online for large amounts. They contain records such as credit card data, passwords for online or streaming gaming services, and even private information. Therefore, we always must consider ourselves potential victims.

4) Antiviruses are able to protect against any attack 

The use of antivirus has become standard behavior for most people. For this reason, many people tend to believe that it is enough to use such a solution to protect themselves. 


But this is a serious mistake, as antivirus software can only identify and block a limited number of threats. Furthermore, they are not able to prevent some data theft techniques from taking place. 


Therefore, when using your high-speed internet plan, several techniques and solutions can be adopted alongside the antivirus. The firewall, for example, blocks attacks that involve breaking into a network. VPN allows users to use a public Wi-Fi network without third parties having access to their packages, increasing privacy and security on the internet. 

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Written By: Erika Yukari

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