The Prism news and your personal security

You may or may not have seen this.  Basically, everything you do at your computer, or your phone, and probably everything you do with your credit or debit cards, is logged and assimilated into a federal database.

It’s happening, it’s real, it’s been happening.

What to do?

First, regarding your computer.  Don’t post the details of your life to Facebook.  Don’t email any information you would not want to be made public.  Sign up for a VPN service to encrypt your internet traffic, it’s inexpensive.  Be very aware that nothing in the internet world is private.

Your cell phone — remember that anywhere you go, with it on, you’re carrying a tracing beacon with you.  Consider when you really need to leave a cell phone on, or really rather just need it available to turn on in an emergency.  We were not that available to other people before cell phones, and people got by just fine.

Your health information — part of the new health care act is a very elaborate sharing mechanism between your medical providers.  The details of your health being spread around may be good, for example when your docs realize you’re on incompatible medications from other doctors.  But nevertheless, all the details of your health care are going to be discoverable by interested parties.

Overall, this is a good time to take stock of your public and private data, knowing that much of what you may have thought was private, is out there on display.

 

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