42% of South Africans don’t know how to protect privacy online

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Kaspersky Lab’s Global Privacy Report 2018 shows that consumers feel powerless to protect their privacy and are also suffering from ‘privacy fatigue’. This often leads to oversharing on social networks and ignoring inherent security risks. Worryingly, nearly one in five respondents (17%) have seen private information about themselves or their family members that should not have been in the public domain (rising to 20% in the Middle East, Turkey and Africa region).

Nine out of ten (90%) of South Africans go online several times a day, which has created a challenge for users, particularly as so many believe they can do nothing about information-sharing by third parties. In fact, 4% have lost interest in how they can improve their privacy, and 8% do not make extra efforts such as clearing their browsing history or using add-ons to block online tracking features. 

Marina Titova, head of consumer product marketing at Kaspersky Lab, says: “The increase in data breaches, coupled with the difficulty in managing online personal data, leads to consumers feeling a loss of control and making them weary of having to think about digital privacy. Whilst there is no silver bullet, there are plenty of ways for them to reduce their risk. This starts with basic digital hygiene but encompasses using advanced tools and technologies to help them get their digital privacy in order.”  

Kaspersky Lab recommends some simple steps to follow:

  • Start managing your digital footprint: keep a list of your accounts and regularly check if your data has become publicly accessible. Create a secondary e-mail, too.
  • Use special digital tools that allow surfing the internet safely, like Private Browsing or detecting any webcam or mic access by untrusted apps
  • Install reliable security solutions that include a set of utilities to minimise the risks of privacy violation.

 To find out more about how consumers feel about their privacy, click here.