Managing Our Data Privacy

Although organizations and companies must be responsible with the personal data they collect and store about us, we, too, as consumers, must take responsibility in the type of information we share about ourselves. (Learn more about why privacy matters.)

Following these basic privacy tips to help us better manage our personal information.

  • Personal information is like money: Value it. Protect it. Information about us, such as our purchase history, location, family, contacts list or where we shop has monetary value. Be thoughtful about who is allowed access to it. Read privacy policies, notices and user agreements, and make sure you agree with how your information will be used.  
  • Periodically review privacy settings. Set the privacy and security settings – and regularly review them – on web services and devices to your comfort level for information sharing. Each device, application or browser has different features to limit how and with whom data is shared. It is important that we check these regularly and adjust them where needed. (Get direct links to update settings on popular devices and online services.)
  • Share with care. Think before posting information about yourselves or others online. Consider what the post reveals, who might see it and how it could be perceived now and in the future.
  • Apply the golden rule online. Post only about others as we have them post about us.
  • Keep a clean device. Keep all software, operating systems (both mobile and desktop) and apps up to date to protect against data loss from infections and malware. Delete unused apps.

Protecting Our Data

Data privacy and data security go hand in hand. Follow these steps to help protect your data:

  • Use long, unique passwords. Thanks to automation, once a bad actor has compromised one password, they can easily bounce it around other sites to gain access to other accounts. Having long, strong and unique passwords for each account thwarts these “easy hacking” efforts and makes it much harder for hackers to crack a password in the first place.
  • User password managers. Password managers have redefined data protection for individuals by providing a consolidated and secure hub for individuals to store their information. Password managers can generate unique, secure passwords and automatically store them. 
  • Use multifactor authentication. When enabled, MFA can ensure data is protected, even in the event of a data breach.