Safe&Sound

I received a message from an old friend 2 or 3 weeks ago. She sent me a screenshot of an Instagram profile and said “You should check this out!!!” and I got curious, instantly. And obviously I checked it out.

It was a locked Instagram profile with MY picture as it’s avatar. I started to laugh hysterically and felt uncomfortable. I have a public Instagram profile and it never bothered me until that moment. Am I really that “public” or should i feel exposed?

That was just one of many examples about internet security, and it was the personal one. I did a quick research and most of them about hacking events, spyware or cyber attacks. And i saw US Army, Canadian Government and even NASA got hacked. So no one is safe, i think.

But in this period, i mean in the era of the internet, one of the most common problem is what we called “catfishing”, stealing private data and/or private photos from other people, cyberstalking, and pretending like someone else online. As the internet rises and digital natives’ breeding, i think online I-d’s became more and more vulnerable and abductable. That’s because cause our lives are transparent as never before.

Certainly, it could get more dangerous than stealing a photo, cyberstalkers can also publish damaging information about you and even people around you and make direct threats. Your flamboyant online life could become your real life nightmare.

“Whatever the type of cyberstalking activity, and whichever platform it is used on, it can be scary and intimidating for the victims. It can also affect self-confidence, damage relationships and cause significant levels of distress.” [1]

Logging out from your all socical media accounts, quitting the internet and running away is, of course, not a solution. We have to learn how to live against these kind of events. Taking sensible precautions is the best way to avoid problems when it comes to reducing the risk of cyberstalking. Michael Calce, a.k.a Mafiaboy (when he launched a massive cyberattack at the age of 15, now works as a security consultant for companies trying to protect their online systems) said in an interview with ITWC, “Whenever you change your toothbrush, change your passwords” [2] . Also you can change your services often or really you can quit internet.

Of course there are many other ways for protecting yourself or your website from this kind of events, but in my opinion, none of them are not 100% safe. So we’re not safe and we will never be.

“The Internet will never be 100 per cent secure, but with good vigilance it can be one of the safest places on earth.” [3]

References

  1. No Name. Cyberstalking: What You Need to Know to Stay Safe Online. Retrieved from http://www.whoishostingthis.com/resources/cyberstalking-guide/
  2. ITWC (Director). (2014, July 24). Internet security tips from Michael Calce [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7Z7YNLXK7k

3. Grant, P. (2000, February). Can the Internet ever be 100 per cent secure? Retrieved from http://www.computerweekly.com/feature/Can-the-Internet-ever-be-100-per-cent-secure