Your day is being converted into digital data before you even wake up in the morning. Your phone recognizes when you are awake and when you are sleeping. Social networking sites know when you’ll post for the first time and what triggers they may put in your email to guarantee that you do. Eventually, your Amazon Echo will be aware that you are listening to the morning news, as you do every weekday. Google, as well as many other services, are also aware that you are attempting to cook flawless pancakes for your children. And then there are the databases that are keeping track of the fact that you arrived home later than usual and have not requested an Uber anywhere. All this happens before you’ve even put on your socks. This is all a part of your digital self.
What exactly is your digital identity?
In today’s digital age, our digital identity is what distinguishes us as citizens. In a digital setting, it is the linkage of information with a physical person. Your physical identity is linked to a variety of traits, including your nickname, age, sexuality, educational, religious, and social levels, as well as your interests and dislikes. In the case of digital identity, a few more attributes such as email address and Social Security Number are included.
The digital identity consists of the same identifying information as your physical identity, but it is published on the Internet and supplemented by other features such as an email or a digital signature.
Despite the fact that these are private attributes, they enable authorized users and third parties to access personal data that identifies you in the real world.
With the advancement of the Internet, we are making more online transactions and gaining access to more services. There is no doubt that it is a game-changer. It simplifies our lives. It provides us with several options to connect with the rest of the world in a number of ways. However, every coin has two sides. Similarly, the Internet represents a significant threat to our digital identity’s security and the privacy of our personal data online.
On the Internet, there are several security threats. Let us take a look at a few ways to protect your digital self in a few minutes a day.
Strong and Secure Passwords
The most common way for you to get hacked is through your email and password. Email can be easily cracked, but passwords are more difficult. That doesn’t guarantee it won’t happen in the future. The majority of hackers have the necessary tools to crack account passwords. In the last four years, most social media accounts that have been compromised had passwords similar to the ones below. If you have a similar password, change it right now.
Strong passwords are undeniably difficult to remember, but this is not optional. In case you forget your passwords, write them down on a piece of paper or in the notepad on your phone.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
You’ve probably heard of VPN — a virtual private network — which allows you to make your public Internet connection private. It prevents others from tracking your online activities, which is critical if you are using an unsecured public network, such as one at a bookstore, hotel, or airport, and need to make sensitive transactions. It is also handy for circumventing geographical limitations, such as accessing Netflix UK to view Sky channels.
While the verdict is still out on whether airline companies really follow your search history in order to raise travel tickets, we’ve discovered that installing a VPN keeps the rates from skyrocketing with each search. More so than Google’s incognito mode, which was discovered to be not so incognito after all.
Choosing the best VPN is a personal decision, but you should look for a provider that does not store any recorded data on its own servers.
Enabling two-factor authentication
It’s incredible that so few people utilize this strategy. Two-step or two-factor authentication merely offers an added level of security to a platform you’re using, such as Facebook.
To access your account, you’ll need two pieces of information rather than just one. For example, you must provide a key that will be texted to your phone after entering your password. This code is usually only active for a short period of time.
Someone would need to know your password and have access to your phone in order to gain control of your account. This temporary key is created by an app you download or even a tiny device in certain cases, but most service providers rely on your phone number.
In the settings of most sites, such as Gmail, Facebook, and Onedrive, you can enable 2-step authentication.
Useful Tip: Call your phone company and request that they add a statement to your profile indicating that you will never give up any personal information over the phone when a salesperson calls. Multiple stories have surfaced of hackers contacting a phone company and asking for a fresh SIM card. As a result, they have access to your phone and 2-factor authentication is useless.
Try putting your own name into Google and see what information you pull up on yourself. Aside from Googling yourself, another option is to use a people search site. Such websites as Nuwber will provide you with links to phone numbers, addresses, and other public records related to you which are available online.
Using aliases, or identities other than your real name can mask your identity and information online. This is a frequent habit among French people, who use aliases on their social media sites so that employers or hackers, for example, cannot readily discover them online. This reduces your digital vulnerability.
With the increased usage of social media websites and platforms, people are disclosing more personal information to the online world, making it increasingly difficult to preserve sensitive data. Fortunately, these methods can help you safeguard your online identity and sensitive information.