Web privacy is the concept of maintaining certain standards of control over information procured, used and stored on the Internet. In its most basic sense, web privacy keeps data about a person hidden when accessing websites or simply surfing the web. Stricter protocols are also in place for businesses and financial institutions that hold sensitive information that could be used for illegal or questionable means by criminal enterprises. Also of concern are certain principles such as data mining and information collection conducted by businesses and governments. General worries over the level of personal security over the Internet has created an industry that specializes in web privacy.
Internet privacy ranges from complete anonymity to full disclosure of personal information. While being fully anonymous over the web is generally a challenge for users, it can be accomplished. However, this comes with the need for a strong understanding of not revealing any sensitive information about one's personal life as well as controlling the visibility of detailed computer data such as Internet protocol addresses. Generally, people who use the Internet and want to achieve a certain level of security use controls and procedures such as personal identification numbers, security questions and password protection. For example, when one sets up online access to a bank account, a number of security measures such as passwords, image recognition and security questions are all used to preserve database privacy.
The biggest threats to online security involve the presence of certain standard operating procedures websites and Internet companies perform to enable better web utilization. One facet of user tracking comes in the form of cookies, data packs placed on a person's computer from websites that allows tracking by the company or organization. Internet service providers, the companies that provide online access for users. These organizations collect large amounts of personal information, but are forbidden by certain legislation in various countries and states from dispersing that information to other organizations without a proper legal reason.
Overall, most web privacy companies address the fact that personal responsibility is the best way of maintaining online security. Workplace privacy, email privacy and personal privacy are all associated with the details and personal data that a person themselves gives out to areas accessible by other groups. Examples of this concept include not revealing unnecessary information and photos online. One of the main targets by identity thieves and scammers are online social networking sites. Advisers say its important to avoid posting information such as one's whereabouts, schedule or other information that may invite unwanted attention.