Internet Privacy & Security: Issues, and Tools for Protection

Moderator: John Armstrong
Time: Tuesdays, 10:15 am–12:15 pm [Note: later time]
Place: Amherst Media, 246 College Street (Route 9, toward Belchertown), Amherst
Parking: Ample parking on site

Explore online privacy issues and practice deploying tools that shield the user from the trackers and snoopers.

Internet users have inadvertently given up all claim to online privacy in return for convenience and access to marvelous new resources. An individual click on a website may seem to be of no commercial value, but a hundred million clicks turn out to be worth millions to online companies we have never have heard of. In addition to the loss of privacy, Internet users are exposed to identity theft, financial scams, seriously unwelcome advertising, and other digital affronts. Every click you make on every web site is tracked and recorded by dozens of companies. We should assume every email we send could be read by entities that seek to profit from tracking us.

This combined seminar/workshop will provide opportunity for participants to present on these matters and to practice using digital tools which help protect us from being tracked and exploited. A list of suggested topics and tools will be supplied: In ‘workshop mode’ presenters will use the Internet to exhibit and explain the use of these tools. There are also many forms of online behavior which help protect us.

Format: Workshop

Role of participants: Present on an issue related to online privacy/safety and, separately, exhibit the use of a particular anti-tracking, anti-snooping tool.

Number of participants (including the moderator): 12

Resources: The Moderator will provide a list of suggested topics and a list of available anti-tracking, anti-snooping and anti-advertising tools. Participants should have a familiarity with computers and downloading software

The Moderator: The moderator spent 30 years in R&D at IBM, and has been online since the 70’s, well before the rise of the Internet as we know it.