Privacy and security threats on the Internet

As for human’s nature, on one side, everyone seems pretty much to take his or her privacy into serious consideration. However, on the other side, everyone is curious about others’ secrets or say privacy(This sentence is translated from the opening words to this article: “How to encrypt yourself”, XinhuaNews,, June 4, 2004).As broadcasting information becomes easier, personal privacy is becoming easier to collect. I’ll talk about a few common traps and threats around the internet.

1. Signing up. On the internet, signing up usually requires users to offer various amount of personal information to certain software providers or service providers, which would give providers a convenient way to collect some data and do statistics in order to provide better services. Those personal information may includes the user’s real name, age, gender, address, phone number, email, and even maybe some ID numbers. Of course some of the fields might be optional. When you send those information to the service provider, you may not feel awful like you are peeped by someone else while showering. However, this is only because you trust those “fare and square” providers, you never think they would be bad. Or you may think that everyone is using this service and you won’t be so terrible and step on the shit. But you may be already in trap unconsciously.

2. Chatting. No one wishes their message history would be seen by others. But every word you typed would be cached on the server, and anyone who can hack the server would see it.

3. Emails. Have you thought about the scenario that the photo you sent to your boy friend would go to every body others’ Sina emails. This is a very scary thing, but it is not impossible at all. In process of message delivery, your personal message is likely to be intercepted and cached by the provider, IPS company or the hackers, and been spread around.

4. Cookies. Cookies can be helpful to boost your internet surfing and give you a fast and fluent experience, but it can also leak your browsing history.

5. The Hackers. As the internet speed becomes faster and faster, it becomes easier and easier for the hackers to get into your computer. The usage of DNS means that your computer always stays in online status, and sooner or later the hackers will find a route to break into your computer. The hackers scan and find your IP address, they test all possible commands, and finally break into your system. Not finished yet, the even worse hackers may tracker your connection to your hard drive, and furthermore steal or destroy your system or personal files.