Before I delve into cyber security practices…I want to talk a little bit about just how insecure you really are. Now the NSA has the tools and capacity to track your doings to a granular level. But what about the average hacker or novice script kiddie? Let’s look at this from a couple different angles.
Normal Networked Usage:
What do you normally find yourself doing that requires internet? Using social media, blogging, internet browsing, shopping, maybe downloading files?
Facebook – ok so this should be no surprise in how transparent this website is. They offer decent privacy from any average stranger(And categories of friends you don’t want to see posts) if configured correctly, but the problem is most people don’t know how or they don’t take the time. Posts are set to public by default, giving the entire world and google a window into your life, whereabouts, and doings. Furthermore, posting from any mobile device adds geotagging locations by default. So when you post a status, sometimes it will tell you the geographical location of where it was taken…allowing criminals to observe and predict your movements. Finally, the amount of information on a Facebook page is usually sufficient of a Social Engineering attack, where a hacker gains unauthorized access to your accounts using information gained from your social media presence.
Twitter – Twitter was a bit smarter than facebook, making geotagging off by default (The option is still available though) but where twitter loses its privacy is by the number of archiving websites there are, such as twicsy. Think once a tweet goes away or is deleted by you is the end? Nope, using advanced search queries you can go back as far as the first tweet. There’s not a lot going on with twitter, and the biggest risk is simply monitoring what content you publish on the internet.
wordpress – I’ve only recently started using wordpress more…but it appears to offer limited security. Password protected content is sometimes viewable by followers via email alerts, private content should not be viewable at all..It offers just as much privacy as you should expect from a blog intended to be viewed by others. So the common tale of caution is to be wary of what people read.
Internet Browsing – The majority of attacks exploit not the service or site that you’re running, but the browser that you’re running it on. Cookies, which are tidbits of identifying information (about habits, location, or other metadata) can be leveraged for money sold to “Big data corporations” — from there you and your contact lists can and will be targeted for hyper specific advertisements, spam mail, possible telemarketing calls, or identity theft.