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Online Safety Issues in 2013

Discussion in 'Domain Name News' started by Acorn Newsbot, Jan 30, 2013.

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  1. Acorn Newsbot

    Acorn Newsbot Junior Member

    Jan 2006
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    While we like to imagine that the internet provides us with the freedom to do almost anything we choose, we should remember that there are actually lots of built-in systems and processes to help keep us safe. However, with criminals always working to find bugs, loopholes, and cracks in the system that they can exploit, you can’t depend on the machines you use to keep you safe – you need to exercise a bit of personal responsibility. Here are some issues to bear in mind in 2013:

    Staying safe on different devices
    It used to be that when we thought of the internet we automatically pictured a desktop or laptop computer. The rise in smart phones and tablets has made us more aware than ever about the different ways we access the internet now, but it’s still important to think about all those other devices that go online, such as video games consoles, television sets, and who knows what else over the next 12 months?

    One of the biggest cases of stolen data from a device other than a laptop or computer occurred about a year and a half ago when 77 million PlayStation Network accounts were hacked. These accounts, which were tied to PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable consoles, held a lot of personal data and, while it is questionable whether any credit card fraud actually happened as a result of this, it is a chilling reminder that even the biggest global companies may not be able to protect your private details as securely as they suggest. This is why it’s vital that before you agree to store any information on any service or through any device, you feel 100% confident about its security.

    There’s a little such thing as privacy
    Over the past year plenty of people have gotten into trouble for saying things on social media sites such as Twitter or Facebook. Part of the problem is that, however much these might seem like private gatherings, they are more like public forums. While privacy settings might be able to protect you somewhat, you should still be wary of sharing details such as your telephone number of address unless it’s via a direct message to someone you know in person.

    The problem with Java<a class="lexicon-term" href="/jargon-buster/java">
    While you might not be aware of it, it’s quite likely that you come into contact with software that uses Java most days – indeed, over a billion people use it. However, bugs in the software leave it susceptible to hacking; last year it accounted for 50% of hacks. The problems with Java are so tremendous at the moment that the Department of Homeland Security in America has suggested that Java in web browsers be disabled for the time being.

    The fact that Java is installed on over three billion phones now means that, for the first time, mobile phone users have to seriously think about their online safety. This example also shows that people who assume they are safe must stay up to date with the news, or risk being exploited. For example, while many people still debate whether Macs are seriously at risk from viruses, could 2013 be the year that Apple has to rush out security patches?

    Child safety
    Protecting children from the internet has been one of the biggest online safety concerns since day one. While a store attendant should refuse to provide unsuitable content to a child, on many online sites there is no such protection.

    Thankfully, internet service providers, device manufacturers, and governments are doing more and more to make sure that parents don’t need to be particularly technological to protect their children. However, parents shouldn’t just focus on adjusting settings on their child’s phone or laptop – they should also make sure they educate and inform their children about staying safe online.

    Talking to your children, getting them involved in projects such as Safer Internet Day, and encouraging schools to take a proactive approach to internet safety, is just as important as finding out where the filter is on your internet browser.

    New Year’s resolutions: stay safe online
    It’s easy to think that you would never be a victim of cybercrime, or bury your head in the sand when it comes to your children’s use of the internet. Unless you take a pro-active approach to internet safety, however, you could find that 2013 is the year your naivety is tested.

  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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