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Data protection and security_90min

Logo https://story.1001wahrheit.de/data-protection-and-security_90min

FOUNDATIONS OF DATA PROTECTION

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Address, date of birth, bank account data – a lot of information about you is stored as a matter of course. But what happens when your data is passed on to others? How can you protect your own data?

The term “data protection” does not mean the protection of data itself. “Data protection” wants to protect the people whose data is collected, stored and used. Data protection regulations are laid down in laws. They are designed to prevent people from losing control of their personal data. People should always be able to decide for themselves how their data is used. This is called informational self-determination. 

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Social networks or websites collect data – and you reveal a lot of this data yourself. Some platforms handle user data carelessly. It was only in March of 2018 that it became known that several million pieces of data from Facebook users, such as their age or place of residence, were passed on to third parties. As a user, you can prevent this by changing your privacy settings on the Facebook website.

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Before/after view

Before and after comparison

At first glance it is not always clear which data we leave behind on the Internet. However, we often disclose very personal data.

Use the before and after comparison to find out which information is available about Anna-Lena on the Internet.

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Anna-Lena uses various apps on her smartphone in her free time. She often uses a flashlight app on her way home in the evening. The light makes her feel safer when she is alone. A flashlight app does not require any data such as location or contacts.

Think about it before you continue scrolling: Is this true?

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Anna-Lena was looking for a new smartphone when she came across a very interesting competition from a trustworthy source. All she had to do was enter her address and telephone number in order to participate. A few days later her phone rang. Anna-Lena was offered new smartphones and mobile phone contracts.

Think about it before you continue scrolling: Can you imagine such a situation?

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In her free time, Anna-Lena likes to use social media – especially with new trends such as dating apps. She recently came across a new interesting app. After she downloaded it, an enormous amount of advertising suddenly appeared on her mobile phone. In addition to advertising for clothing and mobile phone contracts, a window with a virus warning also appeared. It asked for some information about her device and her person. The virus could only be removed after she entered the information it was asking for.

Think about it before you continue scrolling: Is that possible? What could be the cause of all of the advertising?

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On the Internet we disclose – both intentionally and unintentionally – private data. But data about us is also collected at work or during leisure time. Security cameras are widely used in many public places (e. g. train stations). More and more places are being video-monitored for security reasons. Drones are also used and monitor, for example, demonstrations or crime scenes from above.

This is one of the reasons why security measures such as these are being discussed in public: When do we truly feel safe? When do you feel your privacy is being violated or you are being watched?

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Data protection starts with the device that is being used. Keep your smartphone, PC or tablet software up to date. You can prevent unauthorized access by using PINs, passwords or fingerprint or face scanners. Anti-virus programs on mobile devices also offer protection.

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Virtually all Internet services are password protected against unlawful access. Therefore, it is important to choose a password that reliably protects your data. The video explains how a secure password is structured and why “1234” should not be your password.

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A quick e-mail check while you are underway? Public networks are a convenient way to connect to the Internet. However, there are a few things you should be aware of.

Find out more on the next page!

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Be careful when using open networks

Open networks in cafés or train stations are fast and convenient, but can be unsafe. Personal data can be accessed via an unsecured connection. E-mails or services that you need to log in to can no longer be used securely.

No Automatic Wi-Fi Connections

Disable automatic Wi-Fi connections when you are out and about. Hackers can modify WLAN networks so that mobile devices can connect to them without your permission. This allows them to read your messages, for example.

Secure Connections

Only use public websites that encrypt communication with SSL connections. You can recognize this by the name "https" before the actual link. These connections prevent, for example, login data from being spied on.

Disable File Sharing

Windows and Mac OS allow you to connect computers in a network. This allows files to be exchanged between them. This is also called “file sharing”. In a public network, however, file sharing can allow strangers to gain access to your personal data. Disable file sharing in your device settings as soon as you browse publicly.

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Data protection will continue to affect many areas of our everyday lives in the future. By 2020, the “Internet of Things” will have connected up to fifty billion electronic devices – be it the refrigerator, the navigation device or the automatic vacuum cleaner. The manufacturers of these devices should, according to data protectors, pay attention to users’ privacy in the development and production of their products. This means that users should know exactly which data is collected when and how it is encrypted. The “Privacy by Design” requirement is already taken into account in the general data protection regulation of the EU (GDPR).


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Stay in control and be proactive! You have learned about many possibilities in this module: change the privacy settings of your social networks or protect your devices. Data protection is your right – use it!

You can find a summary of the module in the download section.

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