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The Smart Girl's Guide to Privacy: Practical Tips for Staying Safe Online Paperback – 18 Aug 2015
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About the Author
Violet Blue is an investigative tech reporter at ZDNet, Zero Day, CNET, and CBS News, as well as an award-winning sex writer and columnist. Blue is a well-known public pundit on privacy activism and bleeding-edge tech culture. She is a member of the Internet Press Guild and the Center for Investigative Reporting, as well as an advisor at Without My Consent. She was the first female podcaster and currently maintains a thirteen-year-old sexuality blog at tinynibbles.com. She is the author of over 40 books and anthologies.
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Read this book - women especially. There are plenty of easy actions you can take to make yourself and your personal data or bank account safer. The example of adopting a male persona on a chat board sounds like it reflects a pathetic male membership, so if that has to be your option, I would suggest you drop that board. And if there is something bad about you out on the net - a photo or something - remember that swamping the net with good stories and photos of you will push it down the search ratings into obscurity. Ideally, try not to let anything get out in the first place.
I downloaded a copy from Net Galley for an unbiased review.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I was shocked to find out how much information I was giving away just by googling -- even without participating in social media. The default settings of so many programs are such that you essentially agree to give away all your privacy, from where you are to what you are thinking about, unless you take steps to control it. And keep checking to make sure that your choices weren't removed on an update. The book gives a lot of tips and links without bogging down in verbiage. The 2015 print version is smartly laid out, with a very useful index.
Also worth noting is the author's emphasis on the right and need to participate in online life. My own tendency is to be guarded, having been stalked and socially humiliated online a few years ago. Because of that I will never be as open as I once was. But whatever your comfort level online, this book seems a good way to improve your odds for a good experience as well as to protect your private information.
It's a fast and enjoyable read, so you get a grasp on what needs to be done. You can take a few quick steps to make an immediate improvement in your online safety and privacy. Other steps may take longer, but you can do them as you have time.
Because my digital files are so mixed up, spread across devices and browsers, the hardest part for me was first to list the steps I needed to take in each area. I spent several days struggling with my new smartphone (a total newbie, I needed to figure it out anyways), and three long days consolidating, updating and protecting my passwords. (Violet Blue's advice about passwords alone was worth the price of the book.) It is tedious to collect and review all this data from different places, but now that I have the data files, properly backed up, I hopefully won't have to do this again, apart from regular updating.
I think this book is especially necessary for young people, with marketers capturing their every keystroke like a patient etherized on a table.
Get this book!