Think about the data that tech giants have on you. Sadly, they may know you better than you know yourself.
We're talking about data privacy and Google. Privacy and Facebook. Privacy and Microsoft. Privacy and Apple.
Drip by drip, click by click, you reveal pieces of yourself that marketers and even hackers can re-assemble and use against you.
That's why Data Privacy Day is such a big deal each January.
And according to the National Cyber Security Alliance which spearheads Data Privacy Day, many people have no idea this is a concern:
"Millions of people are unaware of and uninformed about how their personal information is being used, collected or shared in our digital society. Data Privacy Day aims to inspire dialogue and empower individuals and companies to take action."
Here are four important privacy actions you can take right now.
How do I manage my privacy with Google?
How much do you want to reveal about your search history, your YouTube viewing, even your location? Google, like most tech companies, wants all that you are willing to share, but you can limit this in several categories.
Run the Google Privacy Checkup right now.
How do I manage my privacy with Facebook?
We've lost track of the number of times Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has been on Capitol Hill apologizing for Facebook's privacy troubles.
However, Facebook is making progress. You can now do things like control who can see what you share and review and remove recently used apps and websites from other companies that you’ve used Facebook to log into.
The Facebook Privacy Checkup rolled out worldwide for International Data Privacy Day 2020. Read this to run the Facebook Privacy Checkup.
How do I manage my privacy with Apple?
Apple has gone all-in on data privacy. You've likely seen its commercials touting that with Apple you have control over what you share.
"Privacy is built in from the beginning, from the moment you open your new device to every time you use an app," the company says.
Apple has a dedicated webpage focusing on the "control" you have over your device security and privacy. See the Apple control page here.
What are you sharing with Apple right now versus what you want to share? Log in to the Apple Data & Privacy page to run your privacy checkup.
How do I manage my privacy with Microsoft?
Microsoft also offers significant privacy controls over browsing data, apps, and everything from location data to Skype.
It may not be known as the privacy tech company like Apple, however, it offers significant ways to control your privacy across Microsoft products and services.
If you use each of these checkups to tighten the reigns on the data you're sharing to and through these big tech companies, you will immensely increase your personal and data privacy.