I’ve been distracted this week by being on social media. Already. Hope my return last week isn’t a mistake.
Today’s topic is, ironically, connected to this return. It is about my new-found passion, it has been for a while now—privacy and cybersecurity.
I told you, it is ironic.
The issue of online privacy went mainstream with Edward Snowden in 2013. A lot of people like myself, learnt about it then for the first time. Since then, my interest in the subject has gradually increased.
My two biggest fears of social media were: a) being judged by others for doing anything on it and b) privacy breaches by the companies. The former is waning now, and the latter hasn’t stopped waxing. (…wanted to use waxing-waning, you’re welcome.)
Anybody who knows anything about this, will tell you that social media and privacy are mutually exclusive: you cannot be on social media (especially zuckbook!) and be completely private.
I am struggling to reconcile the two ideas myself. All I can do is learn more and become more aware.
I understand that I have to compromise privacy if I want the reach of social media. And frankly, anyone who wants to put their name and their face to something in public, will have consequences to face; this has always been true, irrespective of social media.
I decided social media was ‘reach’ for me. It may be something else for you—connecting with friends and family or new people, for entertainment, for work or what have you.
There is no doubt that it is a compromise with privacy. It can be difficult to navigate and try to keep up. This makes us do things in extremes: either never come online or overshare without a care in the world. Fortunately, it is a spectrum and we don’t have to function in binaries.
For example, I forced myself and my people onto Signal after the Facebook saga
two months ago. I had been procrastinating the move for months before that, because I was overwhelmed.
Luckily now, my private conversations happen only on Signal app. And I treat all conversations that happen on Whatsapp as if it were in public. (Signal>>>iMessage>whatever)
I liked a comment I once read on Reddit
—'Privacy and cybersecurity is a journey’.
It is impossible to learn everything overnight. It will take years. Earlier this journey starts, the better.
Please bear in mind I’m a complete novice myself. If you already know these basics, hit reply and share your own learnings with me:)
Have a lovely week,