Credit: StaySafeOnline.org

Credit: StaySafeOnline.org

January 28th is International Data Privacy Day. With a theme of Respecting Privacy, Safeguarding Data, and Enabling Trust, each year hundreds of organizations come together to drive awareness and education on protection from cybercriminals.

Millions of people are unaware of and uninformed about how their personal information is being used, collected and shared in the digital world. Data Privacy Day is an international effort supported in 50 countries to empower individuals and encourage businesses to respect privacy, safeguard data and enable trust.

Data Privacy Day began in the United States and Canada in January 2008 as an extension of the Data Protection Day celebration in Europe. Data Protection Day commemorates the Jan. 28, 1981, signing of Convention 108, the first legally binding international treaty dealing with privacy and data protection.

Your privacy is important. Be careful what you share and with whom. Here are a few tips to protect privacy and safeguarding your personal data:

  1. Create seperate passwords for your most sensitive accounts

    • A strong password is a sentence that is at least 12 character long

    • Having a separate password for your work and personal accounts

    • Make sure that your critical accounts have the strongest passwords  

  2. Enable a two-factor authentication wherever you can

  3. Be careful what sites you visit and of communications that implore you to act immediately or offer something that sounds too good to be true, or ask for personal information

  4. Own your online presence - set privacy and security settings on your social media accounts

  5. Don’t reveal personal or financial information in an email

  6. Pay attention to the website’s URL. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the URL may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (e.g. .com versus .net)

  7. Cybercriminals have been quite savvy in their attempts to lure people in and get you to click on a link or open an attachment. Tricking you with a malicious email which looks like it is coming from your bank, an e-commerce site, a government agency or any other service or business. 

    • If you are unsure about its authenticity, contact the company directly - using the information provided on an account statement, on the company’s official website

  8. Teach and inform children about technology safety features - they’re the generation who has grown up with online

Want to view or change your privacy/security settings, but don’t know where to find them? Use these direct links from StaySafeOnline.org to update your privacy settings on popular devices and online services. https://staysafeonline.org/stay-safe-online/managing-your-privacy/manage-privacy-settings/