Empowerment Tips > Online Privacy Protection

To maintain your privacy online…

  • When using social networks, take advantage of the privacy and security settings.  Check out the article How to be Safe, Secure and Social on the Privacy Rights Clearing House website.
  • When sending the same email to a number of recipients, use the blind carbon copy (bcc) feature for addresses and ask that groups and organizations that send you emails use it, too.
  • Don’t give your email address to a website before you read its privacy policy.  If there isn’t a privacy policy, it could be a red flag that something is not right.
  • Do an occasional Internet search on Google or Bing of your name, image and street address to see what others searching the Internet can easily find out about you. Contact an organization that posted the information if you have concerns. Consider making anonymous contributions to charities if you do not wish to have your donation information listed. Google can be contacted if identifiable personal images appear on its Street View.
  • Uncheck any checked boxes when making a purchase over the Internet.  These often give the merchant permission to contact you or send you promotional advertisements.
  • Always protect your personal information. When sending credit card information or other personal information, make sure the information you send is encrypted. Check to see if there is a symbol of either a key or padlock at the bottom of the browser. The merchant should also provide a security statement. If you are uncomfortable giving personal information online, you may want to call customer service to place your order.