FedEx and USPS don’t read our mail. So why do we let Google and Facebook?

It’s very sad to me that handwritten correspondence has become an abandoned craft. Not because of the beauty in (some people’s) handwriting. Or the emotional release you get after receiving an unexpected letter. Rather, because of its privacy.

We trust USPS, UPS, and FedEx to not open and read our mail because if they did, then it would be fairly obvious to the naked eye.

Today, we’re all choosing to send letters en masse via email, chat apps, and text messages. As with the mail, we default to trusting that our eyes and our recipient’s eyes are the only ones to read it.

Sadly, this is not true.

The majority of messaging services (Facebook Messenger, SMS, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Twitter DMs, etc…) use a protocol that is not encrypted end-to-end. This means that the service (Facebook, Google, Yahoo) can read your “mail”. In fact, both Facebook and Google have been known to use our messages to train their algorithms and deliver us targeted ads.

You wouldn’t keep sending letters if your mailman was opening them. So why do you keep sending digital letters that are being read?

One, privacy is an afterthought. In many cases, we just don’t know there’s a problem. But, you’re reading this, so now you know.

Two, privacy is hard. Achieving privacy requires us to put in effort beyond the zero effort our lazy butts were planning on putting in. We stick with the default services/apps our devices give us because the default is easy. But, the default is not secure.

Three, privacy is irrelevant. It’s possible that you know there’s a problem and just don’t care. I had friends growing up whose families didn’t lock their houses. They said they had nothing valuable to get robbed. Fortunately, they never did get robbed. But, you and I both know that word travels fast. And if someone in some circle found out and got desperate – well, you know which houses they were going for.

The same principle applies digitally. It’s not about whether you have anything to hide or of value. It’s a matter of not pegging yourself as an easy target for attacks sometime down the road.

The good news for you regarding communication privacy is that it’s changing. Private communication is becoming extremely accessible for average people. There’s almost no excuse to not secure your daily (or at least your most important) communication.

Join me on May 8th at 6 pm CST for a Digital Hangout on this topic and how you can easily secure your communication and ensure the privacy of your digital interactions. You can reserve your seat by clicking the button below:

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