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4 critical points to consider when receiving cybersecurity and privacy advice

Author: Michael Kassner / Source: TechRepublic

Image: iStock/suphakit73

Advice on the internet flows freely. With so much information available, how does one know what to believe?

For example, there is still significant confusion regarding the now defunct FCC regulation requiring ISPs to get permission from their customers before they collect web-browsing data. So who do we trust to give good advice about being safe and private on the internet?

SEE: The real reason behind the new law for ISPs and what it means for internet users (TechRepublic)

The need for good cybersecurity advice

Elissa Redmiles, a Ph.D. student in computer science at the University of Maryland, wrote a commentary for The Conversation titled Can better advice keep you safer online? in which she offers insight about who to trust when it comes to cybersecurity advice.

“One key to staying safer online may be getting advice from the right places—people and sources with accurate, helpful information that can let you take control of your online privacy and security,” writes Redmiles. “My research, in collaboration with Sean Kross (Johns Hopkins University) and Michelle Mazurek (University of Maryland), explores where people get their advice about online security, and how useful it actually is.”

SEE: Your internet history is now for sale. Here’s how you can protect it. (TechRepublic)

Survey says

Redmiles, Kross, and Mazurek used a survey of 3,000 internet users who are in the US to determine where people receive their advice about online security and privacy. The researchers published their findings in the paper Where is the Digital Divide? A Survey of Security, Privacy, and Socioeconomics (PDF).

“We found that no matter how wealthy or how poor a person is, no matter her education level, the speed of her internet service or whether she has a smartphone, a person’s online safety is closely related to where, and…

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