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Keeping Your Personal Information Safe Online

Keeping your personal information safe online is a priority. There are no ifs and buts about it. Measures that will ensure the safety of personal information in the online world simply must be sought out.

Collection of Personal Information

Without people even noticing sometimes, their personal information are being collected by sites and other people even without their express approval by their voluntary actions. Actions like creating a personal profile to register with and join a community, taking an online marketing survey, filling out entry forms in online contests, subscribing to a newsletter , or simply saying yes to receiving freebies, all release information. It must be noted that no one forced anyone to provide it. The provision of the said personal information is done willingly and voluntarily in the hope of obtaining a benefit.

Sites that require these information for participation in their promotional and regular activities are supposed to use them responsibly. That is the ideal scenario. However, experience tells us that there is no assurance that the information provided will not be used for less than honorable purposes by the sites wherein the information has been provided. There is always the risk of encountering unscrupulous characters online and some will be hiding behind seemingly legitimate sites.

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What Could Be Done with the Information

Once personal information of people falls in the wrong hands such as online stalkers and spammers, varying degrees of inconvenience and problems can arise. The simple knowledge of a working email account can open the doors to floods of spam mail. Viruses and worms can be introduced to the system of the owners of information. Phishing or asking for personal information such as bank account numbers  through deceit or fraud can wipe out a person’s lifetime savings in a matter of seconds.

How to Keep Personal Information Safe Online

With these possibilities, it is important that people know how to conduct themselves safely online. Sensible online practices can save people from a lot of trouble. Most merely require people to think before they act.

1. Deal only with legitimate companies online. When in doubt, there is probably a reason so stay clear of these sites.

2. Install and regularly update anti-spam, anti-virus,firewall, and other required software.

3. Do not open attachments from unknown sender or reply to spam mail.

4. Do not use the same password for financial accounts and accessing social sites. It would be better to change passwords regularly.

5. Anything uploaded online is really never completely secret so take extra care about any personal information posted online.

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