A while back, I posted about protecting your privacy online. Since then, I’ve made a very important realization: Privacy no longer exists.
Luckily, I’ve never been much for privacy. I’m a straightforward person who keeps very little close to the chest. With the rapid-fire evolution of invasive technologies, the ability to be connected and stay culturally relevant is inversely proportionate to the ability to keep your life private.
Besides, in today’s market, authenticity is all that counts. It’s hard to be authentic while peeking at the internet from under a security blanket.
But… What is privacy?
Well, it depends on who you ask. Privacy is merely the degree to which we invite the world into our lives. For some, it’s keeping family matters private. It’s protecting your deepest feelings. It’s hiding your past. For others, people like me, it’s simply about protecting pin numbers and passwords.
The only way to protect the former is to keep your thoughts, feelings and opinions to yourself. Not tucked away in a journal or blasted via anonymous comments and blog posts. Literally, this means sealing off all escape hatches from your being. Some people appear to be capable of this; I simply am not. I need to be me and – sometimes – I need to do it loudly.
Warning: My emotions, ideas and values explode when bottled.
Thanks to the double-edged sword of technology, for every advance made to protect valuable information sources, a swarm of brilliant thieves work to undo it. So what can you do to protect yourself?
The Two Options
You can fight it: You can hole up, detach and become a hermit. You can denounce Facebook and Twitter despite the fact that they are quickly becoming the invisible networks from which we all perch… or
You can embrace it: You can accept that these “new-fangled-devices” are not trends but the new terms of existence. You can find a way to work with or around them. You can recognize that the boundaries between work and play, inner and outer, private and public, are blurring and decide the degree of connectedness in which you will live with each wave of new technology.
Obviously, there is really only one option. You must protect your assets and most important information. Mostly, you need to be proactive. To find out where the information you share online is really going and who is benefitting from its transmission. Otherwise, you’re stuck in this tidal wave of data like a blade of grass beneath a gutter drain.