Security and personal information with online dating

The content of email messages and the people with whom one communicates via email are considerably more sensitive pieces of information when compared with other online activities and associated data trails.One of the largest online dating sites, the 64 million-member Adult Friend Finder.com, has contacted law enforcement and high-profile security firm Fire Eye to investigate a data breach.

86% of internet users have tried to use the internet in ways to minimize the visibility of their digital footprints The chart below shows the variety of ways that internet users have tried to avoid being observed online.Some 68% of internet users believe current laws are not good enough in protecting people’s privacy online and 24% believe current laws provide reasonable protections.Most internet users know that key pieces of personal information about them are available online—such as photos and videos of them, their email addresses, birth dates, phone numbers, home addresses, and the groups to which they belong.Still, 59% of internet users do not believe it is possible to be completely anonymous online, while 37% of them believe it is possible.A section of the survey looking at various security-related issues finds that notable numbers of internet users say they have experienced problems because others stole their personal information or otherwise took advantage of their visibility online—including hijacked email and social media accounts, stolen information such as Social Security numbers or credit card information, stalking or harassment, loss of reputation, or victimization by scammers.

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Telephone interviews were conducted in English by landline and cell phone.

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