Risking Our Safety?

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                                                          Source: http://www.computerworld.com

In the wake of what the media is calling as one of the biggest online breach where  hackers stole  information from at least 500 million accounts making us wonder if the online world is getting even more riskier.It is the largest breach that has hit so many users under a single company Yahoo. Well, we all ought to assume that once we enter the virtual world, we need to compromise on our privacy. Like they say, the digital world is an open book which can be accessible to anyone, anywhere.

There are many such online breaches that have taken place in the last few years and the numbers seem to sore up. The company said that the perpetrators may have stolen names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth and encrypted passwords. Individuals ae forced to think about the safety of online browsing in the wake of such incidents and the government on the other hand claims to increase online security by introducing stronger cyber security laws. What is the future of online safety? How do we ensure that the digital world is safe enough for us? Or will it ever be safe ?

It’s true that once you post something online, it would remain there forever. Even if you delete it, it can be retrieved easily. Although most of the social media websites offer privacy settings to make your account more safer but it does not eliminate you from the online threat completely. With internet accessible to every individual, it has grown into a complex network with no boundaries that is difficult to keep a watch on.

http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/worlds-biggest-data-breaches-hacks/ gives you a list of some of the biggest online breaches that have taken place over a span of few years. A federal grand jury indicted Albert Gonzalez and two unnamed Russian accomplices in 2009. Gonzalez, a Cuban-American, was alleged to have masterminded the international operation that stole 134 million credit and debit cards. The Epsillon breach which happened in 2011 exposed names and e-mails of millions of customers stored in more than 108 retail stores plus several huge financial firms.

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                                                          Source : http://www.le-vpn.com

The list of such breaches seem to be endless and with growing accessibility and dependency it has become a cause of serious concern. While the government is busy blaming the Russians and the Chinese, there is so much of information that is still out there vulnerable to such online threats. While the government focuses on securing applications, such as the devices operating systems, much of our lives now revolves around androids.

At the same time there are various programmes at the governmental level like China which employs, supports and mobilizes Patriotic Hackers to launch attacks against foreign targets. With such governmental support for hackers  do you think there is little hope for a safer tomorrow? China at the same time  has understood the Internet to be an inherent threat to the stability of the Chinese Communist Party and has significantly invested in efforts to regulate Internet activity both within and outside of Chinese cyberspace.

Do you think that such regulation is sufficient to ensure a safer digital world for all of us? Or do you think having a safer internet experience is not possible in the near future? Do you think we would continue to compromise on our privacy despite such internet breaches ? Or do we need to take cautious steps at an individual level to keep ourselves safe from such cyber-attacks?

All these questions seems very vague as the world speeds up to an era of interconnectedness and openness, the role of internet seems to be expanding. Given the scenario, will we ever be able to ensure online safety? Do let us know what you think about online safety and share with us if you have been a victim of such online breaches.

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