Why should relatively-public personal identifying information be kept secret online if at all?

I don’t want to get hung up on technical terms, just laying out basics for this question: I understand personal identifying information (PII) as that info which is not apparent to people who cross paths with you day to day and which could be used to prove your identity. For example, my name and face are not really private because anyone I casually do business with could get that info. My birthdate and address are much less apparent and are considered PII. My social security number is a whole different tier of private, being sensitive personal information (SPI).

I grew up in the wild west internet (there’s fringe PII – apx. age) and was advised never to reveal PII-type info. Basically conceal one’s real identity as much as possible, for safety sake.

Knowing more now, I wonder if this precaution is warranted, especially in the context of persona persistence between platforms which could leak some PII. Most internet use, sure I don’t want my name out there tied to it, but I don’t feel like I need to cover my tracks in general. Conversely, I see some benefit in letting my actual or pseudonymous identities persist online, and I wouldn’t be opposed to lightly-vetted or simply-determined users connecting dots between personas, i.e. friends or acquantances knowing two different profiles both represent me, including a PII-filled one like LinkedIn. I’m asking if my intuition here is right or more risky than I think.

The risks of revealing PII are I think:

  • Identity theft
  • Stalking
  • Planning crimes
  • Doxxing/slandering/harassing

For those reasons, I can see reason to use a pseudonym posting publicly. But I also don’t see those threats as particularly concerning in general, like when meeting someone on a message board or a stranger on Facebook or LinkedIn. Someone finding my profile on LinkedIn already has a lot of information that could be used to harass me, just as it’s useful for potential employers to vet me. It has to do with target incentive: why me among numerous others? And even if someone online pursued one of those malicious acts, how would it be any different or more likely than encountering that malevolence with a completely offline relationship? Is it that the internet is vaster (so greater chance of running into bad apples) and might have a deeper look in my life (so greater vulnerability when encountering bad apples)? An online criminal could choose from any number of other profiles to glean info from, so as long as I don’t give away SPI, it seems like basic PII and my online activity is not any worse to reveal online than revealing my PII and ‘in real life’ activity day to day.

Why should relatively-public personal identifying information be kept secret online if at all?

Need help with showing information in a limited space

Well, it is my first time seeking help for user experience design, so pardon me as I am not accustomed to the proper rules.

I have an information card which shows a thumbnail for a video and below it, information about that video is displayed. The layout is basically like this,

enter image description here

Well, the difficulty is that the application allows user to add multiple number of fields and value, which means that along with video title and details. The user can add 10 more fields with corresponding values.

I was thinking of using a modal to display additional information about the video, is there any better way as I am not so sure about it.

Recovering log in information

we are running two websites on WP. We had an external person managing both of them but unfortunately he passed away recently. We had the password and username for one of them but for the other website we never got the info to log on etc. It is a fairly new website and he didn’t get the time to give us the info before he passed. Was wondering if theres anyway of recovering the account or the log in details?

Any help would be appreciated, thank you in advance!


How do I present ‘negative’ sounding information without discouraging the user?


I’m currently working on a project that essentially will become a website that guides the user to the optimal recruitment strategy for their specific hiring needs.

Before displaying the recommended path for the generated recruitment plan, I want to display an infographic that shows how difficult / easy it is to recruit for the position that the user has specified (based on data gathered from thousands of employers twice a year).

User testing shows that displaying information such as “Employers in XX county think it’s difficult to recruit for the YY position” can feel discouraging for the user to see, while sometimes it’s a good wake up call.

While it’s possible in some cases that the infographic tells the user that it’s easy to hire, it’s almost always at least challenging.

Our goal is to inform the user that they can’t expect to hire over night, which other user testing seem to imply that our users think. While simultaneously inspiring the user to use the recommended plan to make it easier.


How do I inform the user that it’s going to be difficult to hire for the chosen position, without discouraging the user from trying?


How do I inspire the user do perform an action that isn’t going to be easy?

What is the significance of ML in Information Security?

This is not a technical question rather

  • I am seeking an advice about how ML and AI is going to take over the our information security tasks that are currently done manually.
  • How should I prepare myself future ready against such digital labour that is going to be cheap and more efficient.
  • Which other areas should I start exploring apart from just IS which would be beneficial in securing job.

How much information is there about the Wall of the Faithless and the crusades against it, and where can I find it?

I’m getting ready to DM a Forgotten Realms campaign against the Wall, but I’m not sure if I have all the information I could have.

This will be a sequel to the last campaign we had, where one of the characters managed to get most of the others interested in joining him in a crusade as soon as the preparations are complete; the player in question got the idea after playing a game called Mask of the Betrayer.

Now, I haven’t played this game but plan on watching a playthrough of it, but I’m wondering if there’s any more information in a book or a supplement or something that I could read; the more info I have on it the better prepared I’ll be.

This will be a D&D 3.5e campaign, so anything specific to 4e or later won’t be of use to me. Aside from that, though, anything you could find will be greatly appreciated.

Do PHP redirect information disclosure also apply to other languages or framework?

When redirecting using header("Location MyPage.php"); in PHP, any code present after will be executed. So, if you’re using this as a way to avoid user accessing pages where they should be logged in, the content of the page will still be processed and sent to the client. Using a proxy, you can set that despite returning a 302 error code, you’ll also get the content of the page.

My question is, what other languages or framework have this issue ?

Printing document on usb drive with confidential information on multi user computer

I have a pdf file with confidential information on a usb flash drive. This document needs to be printed on a multi user Ubuntu system. I want to prevent other users from seeing the content of the document.

Assume the following procedure:

  • The usb drive is inserted to the computer and mounted.
  • The document is opened with okular or evince and printed directly from the program.
  • The usb drive is umounted and removed from the computer.

Question: What do I need to do to wipe any traces / copies of the document I printed?

First idea: I guess /tmp would be a good place to look out for – though I do not know if there will be any copies stored there or at other places. Do I have to do additional steps to remove all traces / copies?

Competitive research: How to use the collected information

When making competitive research, I find similar websites, competitors and see how they achieve something compared to what I need. When I get this information from many websites, how later I can use the information I noticed? How can I validate, that regarding these other sites I need to do something just like they did?