Internet Privacy: Is the Internet Really Safe?
With every generation, they bring with them a new invention, to advance us both
technologically and scientifically, and thus make life better for us all. Technology, as defined in
the New Lexicon Webster’s Dictionary of the English Language, is "the science of technical
processes in a wide, though related field of knowledge”. Technology, then can be anything as long
as it helps us advance in some way. The technology of the 21st Century is the Internet or cyber
space. The Internet was invented in the late 1960s. Back then, the Department of Defense called it
ARPAnet (Advanced Research Projects Agency network) and it was intended to link research
facilities, defense contractors, and government agencies. The first public demonstration of
ARPAnet was in 1972 and technicians proudly displayed a network that connected 50 universities
and research facilities. Today there are millions of computers on the Internet. Electronic mail
(e-mail) and Usenet (short for "user network") news groups were the first applications. Telnet
gave a researcher on one campus the ability to use a computer on another campus. The University
of Minnesota developed a "gopher" program to help users find information and "go for" it.
Forerunners of today’s Web-based search engines included Archie and Veronica. Those who
named the services were at least inventive. The classified ARPAnet spawned an unclassified
Milnet — together known as DARPAnet. In the late 1980s, the National Science Foundation built
NSFnet. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration cobbled together a network. These,
and a variety of regional networks, were consolidated to create the Internet under NSF
supervision. Today the government is more or less out of the picture. Local Internet service
providers (ISP) and Internet presence providers (IPP) collect fees from users and
pay network operato...
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... might be as simple as preserving your right to express unpopular
opinions without being subjected to persecution, or as serious as communicating sensitive
business information, revealing credit card numbers, legal discussions with your accountant, or
keeping your true identity from a secret government. Regardless of your reasons, privacy is your
right. Contrary to what some governing bodies might want the public to believe, not all those
concerned with security and privacy are hackers or terrorists.
In conclusion, despite its size and rapid growth, the Web is still in its infancy. We are just
beginning to learn how to develop more secure software and we are beginning to understand that
for our future online, we need to incorporate security into the basic underpinnings of everything
we develop. Today, no one method of Internet security can stop a hacker from intruding on our
privacy. Our goal as time goes on and we increase our technological knowledge of the
Internet, should be to raise our standards of security in everything we do whether on our personal
computers or while surfing on the Internet.
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