Privacy Awareness Week 2021
This week, 3-9 May 2021, is Privacy Awareness Week (PAW). PAW is supported by both federal and state governments. It is a yearly reminder to us all about the importance of protecting our personal information. It encourages us to learn new ways to do this or rediscover things we can do that we might have forgotten.
COVID-19 is still impacting our world and therefore many of us are still spending a lot of time online, whether it’s working from home, interacting with loved ones or friends, or shopping online. As a result, our personal information, such as contact details or financial information, is more vulnerable to being unofficially revealed or accessed. It’s very easy to become relaxed or careless when dealing with personal information, but we all need to take responsibility in valuing and protecting personal data.
This year’s theme is ‘Make privacy a priority’. The Queensland Government’s Office of the Information Commissioner (OIC) has provided some useful tips for protecting personal data:
- Protect your information by thinking before posting and sharing information about yourself and others. Don’t share too much and think carefully about what you are sharing as it’s on the Internet forever.
- Read the terms and conditions so that you know what it is you’re agreeing to. It’s so easy to agree without reading through the details just so you can access a website or download that new app.
- Keep security at the forefront of your mind. Try not to let your computer remember passwords, especially for banking or email accounts, and make use of multi-factor authentication. This makes it harder for people to access your passwords and protects you from unauthorised access.
On OIC Queensland’s website, you can find some tips on how you can reduce and/or avoid privacy breaches that are caused by human error. You might also want to check out last year’s tips to stay smart and protect personal information when working from home, which are still very relevant.
Other places you may find useful information are:
- The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner where there are some useful tips for protecting privacy at home as well as at work.
- eSafety Commissioner who has a range of training courses aimed at helping Australians of all ages have safer and happier online experiences.
If you’re a library member then you might want to check out the following from our collection. Not a member? Join up. It’s free to join.
- See what Lynda.com courses are on offer in the way of computer and Internet security, and how to adjust privacy settings.
- Engel, M., 2013. What should go on the internet? : privacy, freedom, and security online / Mary Engel. Updated. [ebook]
- Rotenberg, M., Scott, Jeramie & Horwitz, Julia, 2015. Privacy in the modern age : the search for solutions / edited by Marc Rotenberg, Julia Horwitz, and Jeramie Scott [ebook]
- Kernighan, B.W., 2017. Understanding the digital world : what you need to know about computers, the Internet, privacy, and security / Brian W. Kernighan. [book - Open Access, level 2, 004 2017]
- DeNardis, L., 2020. The Internet in everything : freedom and security in a world with no off switch / Laura DeNardis. [book – Open Access, level 2, 303.4833 2020]
Privacy and Information Week is a great time to think about your personal information, read some great hints on keeping your personal data safe, and take the time to review your privacy settings.