Social media companies aren’t helpful when things go wrong. They don’t really care if you get hacked, harassed, or stalked. When you need to block someone on Facebook or Twitter, or you want to delete your Instagram account, the company isn’t going to go out of its way to help you solve the problem. They simply don’t value your online privacy.
We’ve compiled this guide, based on trustworthy third party sources, to help you make your own decisions about your digital privacy.
The world’s largest social network is also the world’s most important digital adverts platform. Facebook gathers all sorts of information about us, without telling us about it, to put in their customers’ marketing campaigns. Facebook might be the biggest threat to digital privacy.
Dominating approximately 75% of the worldwide search engine market, Google is clearly the go-to option for most Internet users when they browse online. And while having a Google account makes it much easier to interact with the platform (and its associated services, like YouTube or Gmail), that also makes it very simple for Google to spy on you. You’d actually be surprised (or scared) if you’d knew just how much this corporate giant knows about you.
Social media platforms are huge companies that use your personal information to sell adverts. You join to gain access to apps and services that are integrated with every aspect of modern life. You might even need to sign up for a social network for your job.
There’s a joke about the modern internet: If you’re not paying to use something, then you’re the product. But social media companies are squirrely about what they do with your information. You might not know what kind of product you actually are.
In exchange for that access, you strike a bargain. In exchange for some compromise of your privacy, you get to use those ubiquitous communications tools. In return, the social company allows marketers to place ads in your feed or buy batches of personal data to help their advertisers find the right audience.
We’ve created this guide to help you make informed decisions about your online life. We’re creating how-to guides that will help you fix the problems that come from social media. Our comprehensive guide is filled with information from trusted, third-party resources.
After all, social media companies don’t care about your digital privacy. In fact, it’s in their best interest to violate your online privacy. They make their money by selling your data to people who want to use it for adverts. That’s why it’s important to look to an independent source.
Here at Buffered, we decided to do all this work because our business is all about protecting our users’ online privacy. It’s not just in our self-interest to protect your online privacy — it’s our whole business. Our VPN service helps protect users’ data, but it doesn’t protect users from some of the worst of social media privacy violations. This guide is our way of helping you make sound decisions about your digital privacy and online safety.