I’m often critical, on this Blog, of the typical computer user’s laissez-faire attitude toward computer security on the Internet.
I’ve never been shy in making the point that it seems to me, no one wants to take responsibly for the abysmal state of Internet safety and security. Not governments; not software developers; and least of all Internet users’.
But, there’s a problem with this type of straight line thinking. Like many who have a high level of knowledge in various aspects of technology, including computer security, I occasionally forget that issues surrounding technology are rarely as simple as they sometimes appear to be.
Several years ago, shortly after I wrote an article “Facebook – A Scam/Spam/Phishing Factory?”, Wendell Dryden, a fellow Blogger from Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, commented on the Facebook article.
See what you think.
My perception is that most people still see the computer as a kind of entertainment device, with an attached cell-phone like feature. Computers are for playing, chatting, watching short clips, listening to tunes….
If people don’t take internet security (or pc maintenance) seriously, it’s because they don’t think of the computer as a serious device.
Some of this is related to our cultural laziness around safety and prevention. People are routinely reckless with automobiles, decline to clean out the lint catch, and mishandle loaded guns.
But, mostly, I think computers are thought of like television or boom boxes… fun while they work.
My frustration is with government, health and educational institutions that push people to use the internet as though it were as secure and straight forward as a hard-line telephone.
I also think an extra burden of responsibility should be placed on any company or organization that promotes, and then facilitates, monetary transactions.
In short, an outfit like Facebook has no business asking – or even allowing a place for – things like street addresses, date of birth or credit card numbers on its hyper-connective site. If people choose to post those things on their wall… well, that’s a different matter. But otherwise, there ought to be a legal responsibility to not ask for certain kinds of private information.
Idealistic, or what!
I tend to think that Wendell has a good grasp of some of the real issues surrounding the lack of concern for computer security that a typical user exhibits.
What’s your view?
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