Monday, October 28, 2019

Terms of Service...hmm what did I just agree to?

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We all sacrifice some privacy in order to use free services.

How many free online services do you use on a daily basis? Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, Google to name a few? Ever wonder how these companies actually make money? Remember that “terms of service” you thoroughly read and agreed to when signing up for that free service? Yeah, me neither. No one reads the terms of service, but it clearly states how your data is going to be used. Usually, the terms of service states that the company can use your personal data for whatever purpose they see fit. Typically they use your data to sell targeted ads or sell your data to other companies.

Here are 7 ways to protect your privacy!

  1. Don’t overshare personal information on social media.
  2. Set all online profiles to private.
    Most platforms default to share your profile publicly.
    Why does everyone need to know about your Venmo transactions?
  3. Use fake answers for security questions.
    Yes, everyone knows your favorite sports team or where you were born.
  4. Don’t provide your everyday email address or phone number unless you like spam and robocalls.
  5. Review application permissions on your smartphone. Most apps probably don’t need access to your camera, microphone, and all of your pictures.
    Anyone use FaceApp? Then you should read FaceApp is back and so are privacy concerns.
  6. Don’t be afraid to push back and ask why they need information such as SSN.
  7. Delete accounts you no longer use.

If you take these steps, in addition to taking action on posts made throughout October for National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, you will be in a much better place than you are today—privacy-wise. There is no federal privacy law today, but California has passed the first consumer privacy legislation. Reference this Californians for Consumer Privacy site for additional information.

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