what is cyber safety

What Is Cyber Safety And How To Protect Your Online Information

In a world ridden with technological developments, it’s difficult to track where it all started and how it became what it is today. We’re used to taking things for granted, even agreeing to access services in exchange for our personal information. It is obvious, to most of us, that we no longer lead private lives. But do we at least lead safe lives? And, how knowing what cyber safety is can change the game for us?


Regardless of how we use technology, from those using a computer to only check emails to those with many online bank accounts, every second, our personal information keeps leaking away to parties we know nothing about — and for purposes we are not aware of.


With all this information, we find it harder and harder to keep this under control. So, what is cyber safety anyway?


What Is The Deal With Cyber Safety

We’ve only started talking about cyber safety recently, and only because the matter has broken through the barrier of invisibility, landing straight into our day-to-day lives, with immediate and unpleasant consequences.


However, to many out there, cyber safety is still a wishy-washy concept that talks about something we should all have but don’t really benefit from. Something that’s being regulated, but not quite. 


In all truth, there is plenty of fluff information regarding cyber safety, and only some of it goes straight to the heart of the matter.


In this article, we clarify what cyber safety really is, how achievable it is, and what its lesser-known nooks and crannies are.


What Is The Meaning Of Cyber Safety?

Considering how full of threats and risks the online environment is, we can talk about cyber safety as the ability to be secure online. In a more elaborate definition, cyber safety talks about the application of processes, technologies, and measures to protect networks, systems, devices, programs, data, and devices from cyber attacks.


Cyber safety is meant to reduce the risk of online attacks happening in the first place and to protect against any unauthorized exploitation of technologies, systems, and networks. 


At the same time, cyber safety is an ever-expanding industry, considering how strong and smart these online threats have become today. 


Hopefully, we’ve now successfully answered the question of ‘What is cyber safety?’ and you have a better idea of what it represents. So let’s move on to why online safety matters.


Why Is Cyber Safety Important?

There’s always the option to take the internet for granted and enjoy its numerous benefits while also closing an eye to the unavoidable trade-offs you need to agree to. 


You can very well live your life devoid of online protection. Many people do, and for the most part, they are well off. However, when internet privacy and safety are not respected, there are plenty of mishaps that can basically turn your life around for the worse.


Personal data breaches, privilege abuse, credit card theft, identity theft, and the list can go on and on. People have lost their jobs, suffered immense financial loss, companies have lost liquidity, and relationships were torn apart. And that’s not even exclusively because of the free data sharing happening on public social media.


But is there something we can do to enhance our cyber safety and protect the lives of our family, children, and loved ones?


The good news is there are some best practices you can follow to restore and maintain your security online.


What Are The 5 Cyber Safety Rules?

Cyber safety is not a self-occurring online phenomenon. On the contrary, for it to exist, some steps need to be taken and rules followed — without exceptions.


Thankfully the issue regarding cyber safety is not at all unnavigable as there are five cyber safety rules available for anyone to follow — especially those collecting data — and use as guidelines to better understand its nature. So what is cyber safety, and what is needed to achieve it?


1. Consent

We no longer live in times when disclosing data online can be done at the simple tap of a finger. In fact, depending on the type of data you’re looking to disclose, you need to make sure there is approval consent.


2. Purpose

A strict principle governs data collection and stipulates that you should always collect the exact amount of data you need. No more, no less. As a rule of thumb, remember to always ask for approval before collecting and using specific data.


3. Security And Access

You are directly responsible for how your data is stored and accessed, so you need to make sure to do so anonymously. Once you’re storing it, you also need to ensure the data is well protected from theft, loss, modification, and unauthorized access.


When it comes to understanding “what is cyber safety,” we can safely say this is something that falls under our own responsibility, and we must take all necessary steps to protect it.


4. Disclosure And Accountability

Anyone has the right to know why their data is collected and how it will be used. It’s the same individuals that have the right to hold companies accountable for how they use their data. Having said this, they have the right to sue or report these companies for unlawful use.


5. Destruction And Disposal

Data should not be kept for any longer than is actually necessary. The data that is no longer required, or out of use should be immediately destroyed. 


All data should have an associated retention period, and once this has been met, it should be destroyed.


The Takeaway

In the end, what is cyber safety, if not a collection of easy-to-follow steps that gradually result in online security?


Having a safe online environment may not be the easiest to reach, but there are ways to slowly attain security on the internet. 


As long as everyone follows the best practices described above, our entire digital life could be significantly improved. It doesn’t take big changes, but small individual steps that, coupled with law enforcement and shared knowledge within our own communities, can change the way we live online for good.


Looking for more information on what is cyber safety? Need help removing personal information online and ensuring your sensitive data is protected and safe?


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