What is Privacy and Why it is Important?

Privacy is a very broad term that basically means freedom from intrusion or interference in your life. It is the right you have to be left alone. Information privacy is on the forefront of everyone’s mind in the digital age and this means to have the control of how personal information is collected and how it is used. When it comes to privacy issues, there are some widely different views on what each person’s right to privacy entails and how to regulate it.

Why does privacy matter?

If you spend any amount of time on a digital device or are just surfing the web, you should be concerned about privacy issues. Information is collected and exchanged at a very high rate of speed. Technology continues to become more sophisticated and so do the ways we use data, including personal data. Organizations and businesses must take action to ensure that individual’s personal information remains protected. Privacy is becoming one of the largest issues when we speak of consumer protection. Keeping individual data safe is of the utmost importance. A person’s entire life can be turned upside down if their data falls into the wrong hands. Their credit can be ruined, charges made on their credit cards and their identity stolen. It can be a huge mess to clean up. It’s best to prevent the breach from occurring in the first place.

Are privacy and security the same thing?

Privacy and security have some similarity, but they are not the same thing. Data privacy covers all of a person’s personal data. Companies have to put privacy policies into place in order to protect the personal information of consumers. They have to handle the way they collect, share and use personal data in integrity. Security is focused more on keeping data protected from malicious attacks or exploitation. Security is a necessary component of protecting information but it does not address privacy.

Privacy and Businesses

Any organization that does not address privacy issues puts consumers at risk as well as themselves. They can be sued by an individual, class action can be taken, and they can be the object of governmental action. They can also damage customer’s confidence in their business practices and have a severely damaged reputation. Privacy has become just part of doing business in today’s electronically driven world.