Dreamer’s World January 29, 2019 – Security In A Digital World

Snoopy And The Gang tell me that Happiness is a Friendly Tweet. I instantly thought of Twitter. I deleted my account a year ago, but it got me to thinking.

I read an article last night that covered a security flaw in Apple’s iPhone Face ID program. I don’t want to type all the details, but the information is here:

The story reminded me of the perils of the Information Age. I took the step of removing almost all of my social media accounts almost a year ago as it became apparent that nothing is safe, and most social media platforms make it far too easy to steal information without your immediate knowledge. To learn that Apple has had a security glitch like this would unsettle me more if I had an iPhone, alas I do not, but that doesn’t make the story any less concerning.

When the Internet was young, everyone thought it would be a great experience that would liberate us from the isolation of modern life. While there is more information available to everyone, it comes at a price. Accounts are created to track our purchases, our websites of interest, and any number of other things. That information is out there, and the protection it receives is often less than desired.

I suspected FaceBook years ago would be the main culprit of this epidemic of data loss. I believe that I am right now. I questioned the business model of FaceBook when they announced that they were going public. Going public meant that FaceBook had to provide a return to investors, and the only thing that FaceBook had that was worth anything, besides their physical servers, was the information that their clients had so readily given to them.

Of course, there are other data breaches that we read about almost every day. The most disturbing thing is that the stories almost always talk about the violations happening at some point weeks or months ago. Peoples’ information was stolen, and the typical pattern was not to notify them until someone leaked that information to the media. Government computer systems have been breached, elections have been tampered with, and nothing is done.

It is up to each of us to take the necessary precautions against data loss, but as long as we are so deeply involved with the internet, the task will be a difficult one. You can throw away your computer after deleting all of your accounts, and there will still be data held by companies that you do business with, and that data is at risk. There is no perfect answer except vigilance.