The Internet has become a fundamental component of our lives in this digital age by providing us with access to knowledge and unparalleled convenience. However, our privacy is the inevitable price we pay for this ease. Internet users frequently disclose their personal information while navigating through the internet. This information includes our location, browsing history, preferences, and interests. Although it looks harmless, this information may be used in ways we might not have anticipated.
There are numerous risks associated with oversharing on the internet. This personal information can be exploited by malicious actors for financial fraud, eavesdropping, or even targeted harassment. On the other hand, businesses may utilize this information for targeted advertising, often without getting our consent. Furthermore, the information once shared on the internet might be impossible to erase ultimately putting an impact on personal connections and prospects.
Risks Associated with Oversharing Information on the Internet
While the internet comes with lots of convenience there are also certain drawbacks particularly when it comes to the oversharing of information. The following are some possible hazards that you should be cautious.
- Increased vulnerability to Scams
- Manipulation by Advertisers
- Increased Risk of Phishing Attacks
- Compromised online accounts
- Identity theft
- Loss of privacy, etc
“Sharing excessive personal information online poses several common risks, notably heightening susceptibility to targeted cyber threats and compromising overall digital security. Risks include privacy invasion, phishing attacks, and exposure to online scams, such as unauthorized credit card transactions and illicit extraction of OTP information leading to fraudulent bank and UPI transactions. In India, prevalent risks entail misuse of credit cards, extraction of OTPs, and illegal sharing of personal information with spammers,” said Siddhant Jain, CEO and Co-Founder of Vdocipher while addressing the issue of cyber risks.
A practice to protect one's online privacy can involve a combination of practices and tools such as
- Creating strong, unique passwords
- Adopt safe browsing measures
- Minimizing personal data exposure
- Use security software like antivirus and data privacy management tools
- Exercise caution while using public WiFi networks, etc.
Know if is it possible to actively participate in the digital sphere while minimizing the sharing of personal information from industry experts.
"The answer to the question is affirmative- one can actively engage in the digital sphere while minimizing personal information sharing. This involves simple yet mindful participation, like avoiding the disclosure of sensitive details such as identity proof, refraining from flaunting QR-coded boarding passes, and exercising caution when granting access to personal information on third-party apps and websites.
A multifaceted approach involving technology awareness like employing two-factor authentication, checking email breach services, and running antivirus scans enhances protection. Swift response mechanisms, integral in today's digital landscape, aid in staying ahead of potential data compromises.
In today’s growing digital landscape, risks of identity theft and compromised physical safety through geotagged posts are prevalent, compounded by the escalating threat of deepfake exploitation.
To secure a digital presence, individuals and businesses should prioritize cybersecurity measures. Ensuring multi-factor authentication, regular security updates, device encryption, and leveraging AI and ML technologies for real-time monitoring and threat detection are essential. Additionally, employing incognito mode and clearing cache mitigate tracking risks, ensuring a comprehensive defense against evolving cyber threats," said Yuvraj Shidhaye, Founder and Director, of TreadBinary.
How individuals and businesses can protect their digital presence?
Individuals can safeguard their online identity by creating strong and unique passwords, enabling two-factor authentication, and updating software frequently.
Whereas, businesses can deploy firewalls and antivirus software, update their systems, train employees about cybersecurity, and set stringent data protection procedures in order to safeguard their data.
“To safeguard their digital presence, individuals should refrain from sharing personal information like phone numbers and financial details on untrusted sites. They should verify the legitimacy of websites, especially government ones, by checking the domain ending in gov.in. Utilizing strong, unique passwords and implementing two-factor authentication are essential practices. For businesses, employing secure, encrypted hosting platforms for sensitive data storage and transmission is paramount in ensuring digital security,” said Siddhant Jain, CEO and Co-Founder of Vdocipher.