Privacy – Why should relatively public personal information be kept secret online, if at all?

I do not want to get involved in technical terms, but just lay the groundwork for this question: I understand Personal Identification Information (PII) as the information that is invisible to people who intersect daily with you and that it might be used to To prove your identity. For example, my name and face are not really private because anyone I happen to do business with could get that information. My date of birth and address are much less obvious and are considered PII. My social security number is a very different level of private, sensitive personal information (SPI).

I grew up in the wild west of the Internet (there is Rand-PII – approximate age) and I was advised never to divulge information about PII types. Basically hide your true identity as much as possible for the sake of safety.

Now, if I know more, I wonder if this precaution is justified, especially in relation to the persistence of the person between platforms where some PII could leak out. For most internet users, I certainly do not want my name tied to it, but I do not feel like I generally have to cover my tracks. Conversely, I see some advantage in having my actual or pseudonymous identities persist online and I would not object if easily checked or simply certain users connect points between people, ie friends or acquaintances who know two different profiles, me represent, including a PII-filled as LinkedIn. I ask if my intuition is right or riskier here than I think.

The risks of uncovering PII are in my opinion:

  • identity theft
  • stalking
  • Plan crime
  • Doxxing / Defamation / Harassment

For these reasons, I can see reason to publicly use a pseudonym posting. But I generally do not consider these threats to be particularly worrying when I meet someone on a message board or a stranger on Facebook or LinkedIn. Someone who finds my profile on LinkedIn already has a lot of information that could bother me, just as it is useful for potential employers to review me. It has to do with target incentive: why me among many others? And even if someone was pursuing one of these malicious acts online, how would it be otherwise or more likely to encounter that malice in a completely offline relationship? Is it that the Internet is bigger (the likelihood of me coming across bad apples is greater) and may have a deeper insight into my life (the vulnerability of bumping into bad apples is greater)? An online criminal can choose from any number of other profiles from which he can retrieve information. Unless I reveal SPI, this seems to be a basic PII, and my online activity is no worse than exposing my PII and & # 39; in real life "day to day activity.

Why should relatively public personal identification information be kept online, if at all?

Is such a hosting provider trustworthy? (Privacy for the whois information of the domain)

I do not quite understand why the domain names of many hosting providers have taken the whois privacy policy.
If it is an individual, it is easy to understand that it does not want to be overly disturbed. However, as a hosting provider, does not he want others to contact him? Is such a business trustworthy?

I can seem to think:
1] He does not want to reveal his true information, they seem to be hiding.
2] If his business goes bankrupt, he can open a new business undisturbed.

I do not know if my understanding is right. If something is wrong, please give me more advice.

For privacy reasons, only the last 4 characters are displayed in Google Sheets

Show only the last 4 characters in Google Sheets

Current situation:
I have a scanner that scans the customer number. The ID number will be in Google Sheet. However, when scanning, I do not want Google Sheet to extract the entire ID. But only the last 4 characters.

This is due to privacy issues.

Example: Customer number is: y656547i
Google Sheet will only have: **** 547i

I know how to use a substitution formula. But with the substitution formula, I still have the ID in Google Sheet.

privacy – Print documents on a USB drive containing sensitive information on a multi-user computer

I have a PDF file with confidential information on a USB stick. This document must be printed on a multi-user Ubuntu system. I want to prevent other users from seeing the contents of the document.

Proceed as follows:

  • The USB drive is connected to the computer and mounted.
  • The document is opened with eyepiece or evince and printed directly from the program.
  • The USB drive is logged off and removed from the computer.

Question: What do I have to do to remove traces / copies of the printed document?

First idea: I think / tmp would be a good place to look for it – though I do not know if there are copies stored there or elsewhere. Do I have to do extra steps to remove all traces / copies?

Privacy – How to check if the device is doing exactly what it should do?

How do we know that a device does what it should do?

Not This lack of absolute security is not specific to IT security.

When you talk to your friends, you are not sure if they are telling the truth. When you buy something, you are not sure if it actually has all the properties the seller claims.

But it's not that you just blindly hope that everything will be fine: you believe your friends because of the good experience you have had so far, and because when someone finds out the lies, they risk losing their friendship. They trust some providers more than others, for example because trusted friends recommend them or because an important brand would have too much to lose if they lied too much.

The same applies to purchased devices. Given the fact that ultimately many lies about quality are uncovered (like built-in backdoors, selling your privacy, …), big brands try their best not to lie to you as they have a lot to lose. Confidence in the quality of their products is part of their business model. In contrast, cheaper brands do not have much to loose. Therefore, errors, poor quality of hardware and software and even backdoors are more likely to be found in products of such cheap brands.

I can think of reverse engineering, but that would require a lot of knowledge and skills that most people do not have.

For the big brands, it's usually risky enough for someone with enough skills to have some free time (or even get paid) to dig deeper. And big brands usually have more customers and maybe even a few customers willing to spend time or money on such analysis, for example when using such equipment in a business or government environment.

Cheaper brands, on the other hand, are less exposed and much less relaxed, which means that they are less interested. You can even use this limited risk and risk as your own business value: having little or no credibility, you can easily work with dodgy companies or organizations without losing credibility. This leads, for example, to the preinstallation of cheap mobile phones with adware or other PUPs.

How can we check if the device is doing exactly what it should do?

As you have already found out, this is impossible for the average person. And even for experts, it would be too costly and time-consuming to analyze every new device they use.

In the end, it all depends on the trust you can place in the provider. And as with friends, such trust is hard (and maybe expensive) to win, but much easier to lose. As a result, big brands are trying to maintain their hard-won reputation, making it less likely that you will have serious problems with their devices – at least compared to cheaper brands that do not have much reputation anyway.

Privacy – What happens to my image when I create Gboard Stickers?

I did a stupid thing. I played with Gboard stickers on my phone. This includes taking a picture of myself and passing it on to Google. Gboard uses the image to create stickers that look like me.

Google may permanently save the high-resolution image in my account. I do not want Google to take a picture of me. I searched for information and can not find it. It does not seem to be listed on my Google Dashboard.

Where can I find out if Google saved this image?

How can I tell Google not to save the image?

Thank you so much!

Privacy – Link sharing for Google Photos: private or public

I've just posted this in the Google Product Support Forum but may get more feedback here.

What I'm wondering is whether Google Photos would detect and stop brute-force attempts to detect album share links. What I mean is, someone could set up a server that simply tries out randomly generated Google Photo Album links to see if it's an actual link.

I think it's easy for Google to detect and block this, making the link almost private and available only to those with whom it's shared. The chances of generating a single random link that happens to be an actual album seem to me to be very low.

However, if Google does not try to detect and block such a link search, it can be assumed that shared albums are simply public. In my opinion, this would be a data security leak and I am sure that many contents have already been leaked. It's just waiting for the bomb to fall.

Does anyone have insights into this matter?