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Your data is valuable. While you cannot control every piece of personal data collected when using digital apps and services, you can manage your privacy settings and limit what you share.

Every click, post and view creates data. Advertisers, software developers and businesses collect your data to better understand your online behavior and preferences so they can target ads, enhance your customer experience and boost sales. Cybercriminals use your data to steal your identity and gain access to your financial accounts.

What data are you allowing others to access? Some data permissions are necessary for apps to function but not all apps need access to your camera, contacts and files stored on your phone or computer. Review current privacy settings on your digital devices and apps to know exactly what information these services have access to. Adjust your settings to your comfort level.

Protect your data. Every time you sign up for a new account or download an app, do not blindly click through the terms and agreements or you may be giving companies full access and control to your device. Carefully read what they are requesting access to and set limits.

Review your privacy settings. The National Cybersecurity Alliance suggests going through your devices every three months to do an “app audit.” Check privacy settings and remove unused app, which may still be collecting your information. They offer a helpful guide with direct links to update your privacy settings on popular devices and online services.

Learn to recognize fraud. This is also a good time to brush up on your personal cybersecurity, including how to recognize and prevent fraud. Check out our Safety & Security resource page to learn about different types of fraud and how to protect youself .

January 22-28, 2023 is Data Privacy Week
The goal of Data Privacy Week is to spread awareness about online privacy. The National Cybersecurity Alliance's goal is twofold: to help citizens understand they have the power to manage their data and to help organizations understand why it is important that they respect their users’ data. Check out their collection of easy-to-follow resources and guides to help you protect your data. Data Privacy Week.