Google's Email Service 'Gmail' Sacrifices Privacy for Extra Storage Space

Consumers attracted by the extra server storage space that other free email services like Yahoo and Hotmail just can't offer, may not know that those benefits come at a high cost to their privacy. 

For instance: "Residual copies of email may remain on our systems, even after you have deleted them from your mailbox or after the termination of your account."

    Top 8 Things You Shouldn't Give Social Networking Sites

    While websites like Facebook and MySpace make it easy to share vacation photos with old classmates, the personal information on social networks is also attracting people besides friends and family members.  Scam artists, identity thieves, debt collectors, stalkers, hiring managers, and companies looking for a marketing advantage are turning to social networking sites to gather valuable information. Before you publish your next status update, take care that you aren’t risking your identity, security or reputation.

    Below are eight things you shouldn’t give to a social network – when signing up for an account, posting content or interacting with your contacts through the network.

    How to Secure Windows and Your Privacy with Free Software (Fosdick) (.pdf file)

    Did you know that Windows secretly records all the web sites you've ever visited? And after you delete your Outlook emails and empty the Waste Basket, someone could still read your email?
    And that Microsoft Word and Excel documents contain secret keys that uniquely identify you?

    This guide explains these – and many other -- threats to your security and privacy when you use Windows computers. It describes these concerns in simple, non-technical terms. The goal is to provide information anyone can understand.


    This guide also offers solutions: safe practices you can follow, and free programs you can install. Download links appear for the free programs as they are cited.

    Bogus Email Claims Cell Phone Numbers Being Released to Marketers

    Like so many emails these days you can't believe everything that comes into your inbox. A recent example of some of the half truths contained in well-intentioned emails includes the following which has been making the rounds on the Internet:

    Watch Out for "Phishing" Emails Attempting to Capture Your Personal Information

    Email users are being bombarded with authentic-looking messages that instruct them to provide sensitive personal information. It's called "phising." Individuals who "bite" are exposed to identity theft.

    Phishing occurs when a consumer receives a deceptively-legitimate looking email from what appears to be a reputable company. The email asks recipients to update their credit card information or their account will be promptly terminated. Or the message offers a service to protect their credit cards from possible fraud.

    Confusing E-Mail about Opt-Out Number Sends the Wrong Message

    An unknown individual has broadcast an electronic mail message that has reached tens of thousands of consumers, confusing them with information that is only half correct.

    The message explains, erroneously, that as of July 1, 2003, "the four major credit bureaus in the US will be allowed . to release your credit info, mailing addresses, phone numbers..... to anyone who requests it." This is not correct.

    10 Rules for Creating a Hacker-Resistant Password

    Password-protected web sites are becoming more vulnerable because often people use the same passwords on numerous sites.  One study by Sophos, a security firm, found that more than 30% of users recycle the same password for every site that they access. A strong password can help individuals protect themselves against hackers, identity theft and other privacy invasions.

    Want to develop tough-to-crack passwords that resist infiltration? Follow these 10 rules.

    Bogus E-Mail Message Impersonates Social Security Administration

    The Agency has received several reports of an email message being circulated with the subject “Cost-of-Living for 2007 update” and purporting to be from the Social Security Administration. The message provides information about the 3.3 percent benefit increase for 2007 and contains the following “NOTE: We now need you to update your personal information. If this is not completed by November 11, 2006, we will be forced to suspend your account indefinitely.” The reader is then directed to a website designed to look like Social Security’s Internet website.

    Phishing: A Real-Life Experiment with Troubling Results

    Last week I received a Bank of America phishing email. Nothing out of the ordinary in that. If I have a spare moment, I usually look to see if the phishing site is still up, then do a DNS lookup and blast off an email to let the site owner know of the scam.

    Well, last week's phishing was particularly sophisticated.

    Spam E-mails Using PRC's Address

    It has come to our attention that spammers have been using the @privacyrights.org email address to send fake emails (spam). These emails do NOT come from PRC. They are forgeries. They will show the sender as a fake person that is NOT affiliated with PRC. The address will appear as FakeUser@privacyrights.org.

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