What is the difference between digital privacy and online Security?

What is the Difference Between Digital Privacy and Online Security?

It’s not just celebrities and wealthy investors who have to worry about misusing their information – we all do. Whoever uses the internet is at risk of their data and personal information getting exposed in various ways.

The chances are that some of our personal information and data have already been exposed and breached. For this reason, we must understand and examine what digital privacy and online security are to tell the difference and protect ourselves in the digital world.

The difference between digital privacy and online security

Indeed, digital privacy and online security are closely connected. Digital privacy means protecting data before it becomes known to others. Online security means ensuring that when our personal information and data must be known, the process will flow most securely.

Here’s the deal with these two in a nutshell:

  1. Digital privacy – is all about protecting personal data and information so that someone doesn’t accidentally and unnecessarily expose it to others.
  2. Online security – is all about protecting and securing personal data and information when we somehow must expose it to others.

Sometimes companies need their customers’ personal information, which online security keeps safe and handles with great protection. There’s usually a two-step authentication process in such cases for all customers to use and take all the security measures to protect their info.

Digital privacy, on the other hand, forbids the exploitation of your data and information whenever you browse websites online. Thanks to efforts to protect our digital privacy, we see new laws and brand attitudes gradually reshaping. After all, digital privacy is all about giving users the power to limit which data gets collected and shared.

How can these two lines of internet safety be compromised?

These two areas often overlap, but you must be able to tell the difference between them to understand when an external party compromise each. Here are the three cases of internet safety that say all about it:

  1. Your internet security and digital privacy are maintained – that’s an ideal situation. If both areas are maintained, your information is safe and secure, and nobody can obtain it without your consent or for good enough reason.
  2. Your internet security is maintained, but your digital privacy is compromised – that can be invasive. There might be no breaches or hacks and nobody with access to your accounts, but something is still off.                                                                                                                                                              That means your digital privacy is compromised, and someone can track you and your browsing habits.
  3. Both your internet security and digital privacy are compromised – that’s the worst-case scenario. In such a situation, someone can gain access to your private and personal information and exploit it. Usually, you’re a victim of a breach in data.

A hacker can get your name, passwords, email, and other personal details, after which they can sell it on the dark web or post it online for others to use and download.

We can conclude that internet security is possible without digital privacy. However, digital privacy isn’t possible without internet security. You can always post your personal information on social media, where all accounts are secure, but posting such info doesn’t do much for your digital privacy.

In such a case, anyone can compromise your internet security, but you did it willingly. Nobody will have to hack anything to acquire that information. Therefore, always be cautious about what you post online. Cybercrime is fierce out there.

How to protect both your online security and digital privacy?

By now, we know that digital privacy is all about protecting the data and information we share online. Therefore, online security makes sure that when someone needs to know our data and information, we’ll remain as safe as possible.

Let’s see how we can find a medium that will keep both areas safe when we use the internet.

  • Pay attention to what you share online – before you post something on blogs, message boards, and social media, ask yourself the following question, “Can someone use this against me?” and limit what you post.
  • Use strong passwords – create strong and unique PINs and passwords for all the platforms you use online and enable two-step verification.
  • Use a reputable Virtual Private Network – a VPN service will hide all your browsing habits and protect you on unsecured Wi-Fi networks while also masking your location from websites.
  • Check for data breaches – if there is a data breach, someone can compromise your internet security. Immediately update all your passwords when this happens.


Bear in mind, both online security and digital privacy are essential for anyone who uses the internet and should always be spot on. The only way to stay safe online is to protect both these concepts simultaneously, and by doing so, avoid data breaches.

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