Interview with Cybersecurity Writer David Geer

Limit the information that you freely give to any device, person, application, or website...

Interview with David Geer

It’s been a while since our last interview and we’re super-glad to restart the series. This time we managed to get cybersecurity writer David Geer to answer a few questions. Here’s what he had to say…

Can you shortly introduce yourself?

I’m David Geer, writer and principal of Geer Communications. I write in the cybersecurity niche. For a broader introduction to me and my work, check out my Twitter and LinkedIn profiles as well as my website

What do you see as the main challenges for our privacy today?

Black hat hackers and valid commercial entities use cookies, website registration data, PII and PHI, social media activity, and more to build profiles of consumers and employees. Blackhats use these profiles to help them steal your identity and leverage your business and personal computers, smartphones, and smart devices (IIoT, IoT) in criminal activities. Vendors use them to surround you with constant advertising to sell you products and services.

What can we as individuals do about it?

Limit the information that you freely give to any device, person, application, or website. Don’t reuse the same password on multiple sites. Use the Incognito mode in your web browser and consider search engines such as DuckDuckGo. Don’t reveal too much personal data on social media, and limit your connections to people you know.

Use security freezes at all three credit reporting agencies. Learn the privacy and security settings native to the apps, sites, and devices you use. Use best of breed security and privacy applications such as anti-malware and firewall products. Use adblocking software.

If you can find a high-speed VPN service, consider using it to encrypt your web traffic and hide your identity and location.

Can VPNs help? Do you use one?

VPNs can help if you find a fast one. Many slow your traffic to a crawl and are not worth the trouble.

Do you have some other advice for our readers so they could, at least partially, regain their privacy?

The new privacy laws increasingly empower you to request that entities delete your data, and they will have to comply.