Moderately Important: Section Introduction

Section two of this site/book is titled "Moderately Important." These are things that are pretty important, but not "drop everything and do it right now" important. This section pertains mostly to data tracking and privacy and offers some concepts, tools, and tips to protect your privacy. As we sadly learned in the 2016 Cambridge Analytica scandal, data collection can easily be abused for more than just targeted advertising. It can easily be abused to sway entire populations of people to vote in ways they wouldn't normally vote and change entire courses of history on a macroscopic level. Protecting your privacy isn't just about not being swayed by an advertisement, it's about protecting yourself from literal mind control and oppression.

The section starts by explaining metadata and encryption, the two most important concepts in data protection and privacy. It then goes on to discuss data backups, their importance, and some practical advice. Then it offers some advice on how to make your desktop computer environment more privacy friendly. Finally, it moves on to encrypted messaging, which is - in my opinion - one of the most exciting parts of privacy offers some advice on steps you can take to make improve mobile device privacy.

Once again, it bears repeating that this section will not make you anonymous or unhackable, but it will help you outsmart a lot of the "unconscious surveillance" I mentioned in Understanding Surveillance. It will help protect you from bots that read your emails and texts, from location-scraping apps and services, and from being a victim of bad luck and ill preparation.

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