Privacy Mythbusting #6: Security equals privacy. (Nope!)

Filed under Crash Course on

When we talk about online privacy, we often hear responses like: “I’m protected by my antivirus software, spam filter, etc.” While security software is important in staying safe online, it is a common misconception that security = privacy. It does not.

A great example is Google’s ad network. While connections to it are securely encrypted, Google’s trackers still appear on 75% of the top million websites, tracking you across the web, inundating you with highly targeted ads that follow you everywhere. There is security, but no privacy.

Another example is the antivirus company AVG (owned by Avast). In 2015, they updated their privacy policy to be more “transparent.” Wired magazine rightfully noted something alarming in that new privacy policy:

Screenshot of Wired article calling out AVG

Security without privacy is like having a house made of bullet-proof glass. Sure, no one is getting inside, but your personal life is still on display.

Picture of house with glass walls showing people inside

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Privacy Mythbusting #6: Security equals privacy. (Nope!)
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