When's the last time you've thought about protecting your personal data? I mean really thought about the security of your private information in a world of data breaches. What about your family's?
We live in such a fast-moving world. Our private information has turned into currency, sometimes sold to third parties without our consent, and yet we still give it away freely. Perhaps, we share more than we realize.
We sign up to listen to podcasts, share about our lives on social media, shop online using credit cards, and file taxes using online software. We do all these digital experiences on our devices and computers. In addition, we have the option to store our information to our online accounts for future log-ins.
That information is gold. And if it were to fall into the wrong hands, you're looking at some serious consequences.
To remind us about the growing importance of online safety, there's Data Privacy Day.
Now in its 12th year, the international holiday that occurs annually on January 28 returns as our friendly big brother or big sister saying, "Stop. Think. Connect."
What is Data Privacy Day?
A quick background: Data Privacy Day is observed in the United States, Canada, Israel and nearly 50 European countries. It started in the USA and Canada in 2008, born from Europe's Data Protection Day that commenced in 1981.
The holiday is celebrated on January 28 specifically because in 1981, Convention 108 was signed into the law. It was the initial international treaty made for privacy and data protection.
The goal behind this educational initiative is to raise awareness and empower people to be proactive in respecting privacy and safeguarding data.
Data Privacy Day also serves as a reminder to businesses who collect data, to protect it. Doing so builds trust among consumers as respecting privacy is good business. How is your organization handling data privacy and security?
With more and more people and organizations using connected devices and surfing the internet, it's more important than ever to understand how personal information is shared and collected.
Own Your Privacy
The National Cyber Security Alliance is promoting the day with a new theme this year "Own Your Privacy." This year's theme entails:
- Creating a culture of privacy at work. Understand the role of privacy at your company and how it impacts employees and customers.
- Talk to your family, especially across generations, about ways to stay safe online. Avoid oversharing personal details on social media is a good place to start.
- Get involved in your community and volunteer by sharing what you know.
Essentially, owning your privacy is being proactive at work, at home and in your community.
24By7Security is pleased to contribute to the Data Privacy Day initiative with our January webinar on the California Consumer Privacy Act, which could a sign of more privacy regulations to come in the US.
Tips on updating your privacy settings
In celebration, why not take the time to update your privacy and security settings across all connected devices. The NCSA recommends going through each device you use and checking each online account and services you frequent.
Sounds a bit challenging, right? That's okay. A quick tip, start with one account and go from there. Take this handy list from the NCSA to get you started:
- E-commerce. Hello Amazon and Groupon, here's looking at you. This applies to all other e-commerce sites that you use.
- Email and voice.
- Mobile/location services.
- Music. Yes, music. Update your settings via Spotify and Apple Music or any other music apps you use.
- Photo and video sharing accounts and apps. No one wants their, ahem, photos to land in the wrong hands.
- Ride share apps. Lyft, Uber and similar apps.
- Search engines. Google and DuckDuckGo, for instance.
- Social networks. All of them frequently change their privacy settings. Adjust accordingly. That includes Tinder, MeetUp and Reddit.
- Web browsers. Google Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer. Check. Check. Check.
- Wearables. Fitbit. Smart watches.
- Smart speakers. OK, Google. Alexa. Please stop listening to me. Thank you.
- Gaming. Xbox One. Nintendo Switch. And more.
In addition, we've covered several tips in a previous year's blog. You can read it by clicking this link.
Take the pledge
Remember, data privacy is a continuous effort. Be sure to regularly update your apps, software and connected devices throughout the year, not just on Data Privacy Day.
To help support your efforts, watch this video on how to Take the Cyber Hygiene Pledge and Stay Cyber Healthy:
Together, as responsible and vigilant digital denizens, we can share with care and better manage our data.