Personal information about individuals is processed constantly in a variety of contexts, including the workplace, interactions with government agencies, the healthcare system, the purchase of products and services, and internet use. Most people don’t understand the importance of protecting their personal information or their rights in this area.
Rarely do people understand what recourse they have if they believe their privacy has been invaded or the function of national data protection bodies.
Data Protection Day was established by the Council of Europe on April 26, 2006, and it is observed annually on January 28, the date on which Convention 108, the Council of Europe’s data protection convention, was opened for signature. Outside of Europe, people now observe this holiday under the name “Privacy Day.”
Data Privacy Day History
The importance of protecting personal information is not a recent phenomenon or a feature of the digital era. For decades, the safety of our individual records has been at stake. Financial institutions, product manufacturers, political parties, non-profit organizations, ad agencies, polling groups, airlines, grocery stores, credit agencies, and many more have been collecting, manipulating, sharing, and selling personal data for decades, often further manipulating it for profit.
Data collection, both legitimate and not, has been simplified by the advent of digital technologies. With 4.66 billion individuals already using the internet regularly, there is an unimaginably large trove of unprotected information just waiting to be stolen.
Maintaining confidentiality isn’t usually at the top of most people’s daily to-do lists. You probably didn’t give it a second thought when you turned on your desktop, laptop, or mobile phone this morning to check email, read the news, research investments, and do the myriad other things we do with technology.
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When it comes to protecting our most sensitive data from invisible but inquisitive eyes, most of us are guilty of being too relaxed. Many of us may be lax about data privacy because we do not fully grasp the distinction between data security and data privacy.
While both data privacy and data security are related, they are not the same thing. In our opinion, the easiest way to illustrate the distinction is to compare data security to another common method of making a building more difficult to break into: installing bars on the windows. When you want to hide what you’re wearing, who you live with, what you’re having for dinner today, and what movie you’re watching, data privacy is like drawing the blinds.
Most of us end-users don’t give much thought to data privacy beyond making sure no one else has our credentials. We have faith that our data will be protected by the providers of software and data services that we must use in exchange for their services. However, in the modern era, personal data obtained by businesses is not necessarily considered confidential.
Unfortunately, the majority of those who have access to our private information have no legitimate reason to do so. People we have never met online but who now have access to our private information should be blocked at all costs. If you are “on the grid,” meaning you use any kind of digital device for any reason, and you believe that your data is secure because you have anti-spam and firewall programs, then Data Privacy Day is a wake-up call for you.
To celebrate Data Privacy Day, here are some tips for keeping your private data safe. There is value in it, and we must guard it as if our lives depended on it, because in certain cases, they do.
How To Celebrate Data Privacy Day
Maintain The Confidentiality Of Your Information
If you are not already taking data privacy seriously, your first duty today, should you choose to accept it, is to start doing so. Make a pact with yourself right now to learn something new about data privacy every day, and then do what you need to do to protect the privacy of your own information.
Study The Concept Of The “Internet Of Things”
Spend some time today learning about the connections between the various parts of your own “Internet of Things” and the rest of the digital world. Your smartphone, modem, TV, automobile, fridge, HVAC system, smoke alarms, baby monitors, and home security system are all examples of such devices. The point is made.
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You can get more done in less time by keeping all of your digital gadgets in sync with one another, creating an “internet of me.” If you want to avoid sharing the personal information required to synchronize all of these devices with those who may desire your data but don’t need it, you should take the necessary measures today.
Volunteer Your Knowledge To Help Out The Community’s “Senior” Members
If you are comfortable in the digital realm and have a passion for education, consider leading a workshop or seminar on data protection designed for seniors. When teaching older people how to use a new piece of technology, demonstrations are much more effective than lengthy explanations.
Surprisingly, many “baby boomers,” or people born between 1946 and 1964, as well as the majority of the older WWII generation, had little to no exposure to computers until they retired.
Due to their inability to protect their personal information, senior citizens are easy prey for hackers. Your willingness to share your knowledge with these appreciative locals will go a long way toward ensuring that this at-risk population is protected from cybercriminals.