By Samantha Arietta

Whether we admit it or not, like it or not, the internet tracks our every move. Everything about our lives nowadays can be seen by postings on social networks and any data a cell phone or computer saves. There are too many ways to be tracked.

Bruce Schneier, a security technologist and CNN reporter said, “Maintaining privacy on the Internet is nearly impossible. If you forget even once to enable your protections, or click on the wrong link, or type the wrong thing, and you’ve permanently attached your name to whatever anonymous service you’re using.” He is absolutely right. Everything and anything you do on the internet is public, whether you realize it or not.

Sites use cookies to track everything you click. These cookies are software that web pages drop onto your device that identify you anonymously, but nonetheless signal useful behavior about your background interests to advertisers who might want to target you. I think of this as spying, but advertisers and big businesses say that they are simply targeting consumers.

Although most people do not enjoy this lack of privacy, it does not stop our addiction to posting everything we do. I think we have become obsessed with social networking, which only furthers publicity of our lives. Twitter representatives claim that on an average day, 50 million tweets are sent out. There are also over a billion Facebook postings per day.

There is no such thing as a private conversation anymore. There is less conversation in person and more conversation that is conducted by e-mail, text, and social networking. Everything you do on a computer is saved and passed from company to company without your consent.

I think we can take measures to prevent this, but who really wants to limit what they search on Google from their iPhones, and instead use computer web browsers that allow one to delete cookies. No one wants to use an alias on Facebook or disconnect their cell phones.

One of the most effective ways of preventing “internet spying” is to clear your computer browser’s cache and to delete cookies at least once a week. Also, by turning on the “private browsing” feature included in most browsers, you can block tracking technologies from installing themselves on your computer.

However, this is just the world we live in today. Everything is public knowledge and privacy is non-existent. Welcome to a world where Google knows more about your personal life and interests than your friends do.


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