Why Your Personal Data is Important to Protect

Protecting your data is a prime goal of many concerned about digital privacy. While keeping your credit card numbers or other sensitive financial information from prying eyes is a no-brainer, there are plenty of other types of data that are just as personal—but which are being collected about us every day.

Beware of Cyber Scams

Online scammers have developed sophisticated ploys to gain access to financial information online, from phishing scams to email hacking and much more, pointing to the need for a private email service that makes security a priority. However, information that we may not think twice about sharing online—our mailing address, phone numbers, educational and career histories—creates a personal profile of each of us that can be used by businesses, tech companies and others looking to target us.

You’re Building a Cyber Profile

Apart from basic information about each of us, this profile is also built through records of what we search, whom we interact with, the products and services we’re interested in and more — data that certain sites can sell to companies looking to capture users as customers. Just as shopping market coupons are tailored to each shopper based on his or her purchasing past, online advertising targets users based on their histories and habits. Protecting your data helps keep your online experience authentic and makes your buying decisions and other private matters simply that—private.

Targeted Content Creates Division

The issue also extends to larger global issues, such as political polarization. Online search engines tailor results to users’ online profiles, so one search could net a certain set of results for one internet user and the person next to him or her could get an entirely different list of results. In a country like the United States, which is increasingly sharply divided on political issues, this strategy can make those divisions even starker. If a news search, for instance, only generates stories that are tailored to confirm our political leanings, that can reinforce our beliefs—while another person may receive a list of news items that are designed to align with an entirely opposite point of view.

Protecting your data is not just a financial concern, but rather one that extends to basic rights to privacy and even to global political trends. With stronger cybersecurity protections—such as private email, firewalls, and secure sites—we can all take steps to keep our personal data safe and secure. If you’re interested in protecting your data, get started with a private email service like Reagan.com to ensure your personal and private data isn’t used against you in the future. Taking the proper measures sooner rather than later can help eliminate the potential threat later down the road.