THE BOOKS (or BOOK for now)
Check back often as I plan on writing several additional books. You can be notified when new books are available by clicking here.
Is Your Digital Front Door Unlocked?
"Is Your Digital Front Door Unlocked?" explores the modern implications of our human nature: our inherent inclination to share our experiences, specifically on the internet. Our increasing reliance on technology to connect with others has us sharing far more information about ourselves than we even realize, and without a full understanding of the risks involved.
While we’re posting innocent poolside pictures, we’re also creating a collection of highly personal information. And not just on social media. It happens by simply going about our day. Our computers that we use for work and play, our smartphones that are nearly always within arm’s reach, and our digital assistants that field household requests are capturing and sharing data about our habits, our interests, and even our comings and goings. Yet we largely don’t know it’s happening—or, for that matter, with whom we’re sharing and to what end.
I wrote this book for anyone aspiring to live online with an eye towards doing so as safely and privately as possible for them and their family. And that should be plenty of us. With news of data breaches, companies sharing our personal information without our knowledge, and cybercrime robbing the global economy of an estimated $600 billion a year, it’s easy to feel helpless. But we’re not. There are things we can do. It’s time to understand how we’re creating all this personal information so we can control its flow and who has access to it. The book takes an even-handed look at the most prevalent privacy and security challenges facing individuals and families today. It skips the scare tactics that can dominate the topic and illustrates the steps each of us can take to lead more private and more secure lives in an increasingly connected world.
The notion that binds the book together is the idea of a personal data lake. Data lake is a term widely used in business to reflect a large repository of data that companies collect and store, but in the book I explore how we create personal data lakes as we go about our digital lives. It explores how our data lakes fill as we do more and more activities online and offers insights that can be used to protect our personal data lakes so that we can live more privately and enjoy safe online experiences.
This book is for people in families of any size or structure. It looks at security and privacy across the stages of a family’s life and the roles each of us play in those stages (from birth to the time we eventually leave a digital legacy behind), along with important milestones and transitional periods in between. You’ll see how security and privacy are pertinent at every step of your digital journey and how specific age groups have concerns that are often unique to that stage of life. The structure allows you to easily navigate to the chapters and sections that most relate to which life stages you are in and where you are looking for guidance.
The book, like most things in life, is about choice. You can choose to roll the dice and hope you’re not either one of the hundreds of millions who are victims each year of phishing scams, ransomware attacks, and identity theft, or among the handful of those who still fall for the Nigerian prince lottery scam. You can also choose to use your computers, tablets, smartphones, personal assistants and any number of connected things in your life as you have been letting companies grift all kinds of personal information from you without your knowledge (and sometimes consent). Or you can choose to embrace the guidelines outlined in the book and make it orders of magnitude more difficult for a bad actor or cybercriminal to make a victim of you or your loved ones.