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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

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One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2014

In each issue, Penn's Journal of Record, The Almanac publishes helpful tips and hints for dealing with information security and privacy matters. This page is a collection of all those published thus far.
New! You can now receive new One-Step-Ahead Security and Privacy Tips automatically!
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Table of Contents (view all)

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!
If your computer runs Windows XP, you must update it now!
Why Should You Report Security Incidents? And How Do You Report One?
Photo and Video Privacy Issues
The Password is Dead, Long Live the Password!
Data Privacy Month: NSA Surveillance Panel at the National Constitution Center
Protecting Your Finances During This Year’s Holiday Shopping Season
Beware of Phishing E-mails in the Wake of Typhoon Haiyan
No E-mail from Penn Will Ask For Your Username/Password or SSN
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: Does It Apply to Your Website?
October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month; Free Secure Disposal of Paper and Electronics
What Basic Rules Protect Student Information at Penn? (September 2013)
Protecting Privacy and Security on Penn + Box

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Tagged with privacy

Tuesday, October 17, 2006 - Almanac Vol. 53, No. 8

The panoptic Web

In his 1993 book, The Panoptic Sort, Annenberg Emeritus Professor Oscar Gandy warned about the threat to privacy that panoptic technology poses. Gandy describes panopticism as continuous, automatic surveillance, and describes efforts to monitor the spread of plague in cities in the 17th century by asking individuals to stand in front of their windows to be inspected for pox, and the design of prisons that permit a few guards to monitor hundreds of inmates.

Classic examples of panopticism today are web search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Altavista. Search engines run programs called "spiders" that scour billions of the world's computers and index literally every single word. Google has two spiders, one that follows every link in the world once a month, and another that indexes frequently updated sites like newspapers and magazines. Wikipedia reports that in 2006, Google indexes were stored on 450,000 computers spread around the world. Google receives about a billion requests a day. In 2005, Google claimed that they indexed over 8 billion web pages, but experts claim that it is closer to 24 billion and expect that the short term goal is to be able to index 100 billion. Yahoo claims to have indexed over 19 billion documents.

Although it would be impossible to find information on the web without indexing, it's important to take steps to ensure that private information doesn’t get indexed. Read the next three tips to find out what steps you can take.


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