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?

New developer here, tips/suggestions to improving UI/UX on personal website using ReactJS [on hold]

I am an amateur web developer, and am teaching myself React. Currently, I have been building a personal website hosted on github pages –

https://roy-05.github.io/website/#/

Now my primary goal has been to make the page functional, and far as I understand, it is functional. But the page does not really “look’ or “feel” good – that is, I wouldn’t want to spend time on this site at all. I’m now working on making it responsive and improving UI/UX but am having a hard time there. As someone who has not made a website ever before I cannot conceive ideas that will make the website look appealing/aesthetic. So I was hoping for help in –

  1. As I want to complete the mobile design first, switching over to mobile view (iPhone 6/7/8) in devTools, what suggestions (font, style, colors, item-positioning, etc) do you have to make the site look more appealing to a user.

As this is a personal website, I think the essential factor is that it should be “eye-catching” but I don’t understand how to make it so. Is there any online resource/books I can study to get a better understanding of aesthetic web design? I appreciate your help in developing (no pun intended :P) a budding programmer and please do not hesitate to criticize and highlight the site’s shortcomings.

EBook: Unique, Custom, Well Researched, Optimised for Your personal Goals for $25

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by: PerformElite
Created: —
Category: eBook
Viewed: 156


Use RSA key to encrypt/decrypt personal document

Suppose I have generated a public/private RSA4096 keypair using GPG. Is it secure to use this keypair to encrypt/decrypt documents solely for personal use, i.e., have an encrypted backup of some very important files of mine. In that case I’d be using something like:

gpg --encrypt --recipient "<my info>" a_document.pdf  # Then when I need to recover that document: gpg --decrypt a_document.pdf.gpg 

Is this a secure practice? Could an attacker recover the original PDF? As a separate note, if they also have the secret GPG key file (but obviously not the passphrase itself) would they be able to recover it?

Would it be better to encrypt using --symetric?

Until now I was thinking of this practice (encrypting files using public/private key pair) as perfectly secure (even when somebody has the private key but not the passphrase) but now I’m going through the Coursera Cryptography I course and one of the first points mentioned in the RSA cryptography is to never encrypt the message itself using RSA.

[ Personal Finance ] Open Question : My wife is pregnant and my insurance is crap, 4k deductible. I got a 100k mortgage 3 years ago so not much equity built up.?

I neeed 3 or 4k to pay for medical bills and apparently i dont qualify for medicaid. Any advice on how i could come up with the money. Any kind of home equity loan or HELOC. Any help is appreciated!

Create realistic digital portrait for commercial or personal use for $190

Hi i will draw an amazing realistic digital portrait using the photo you provide for reference. It can be used for your music covers, printing or any commercial or personal use. I need: a good quality photo no blurs etc you will get: a 300dpi high resolution jpeg or png or any image format that you need. Size is 2500x3500px by default. If you need other please mention. you can inbox me before placing any order. Thanks

by: Spotifyed
Created: —
Category: Art & Design
Viewed: 188