Modern Internet Safety – Getting “Doxed”

For the past several years, there has been a new online security worry.

It is no longer just a matter of worrying about someone hacking your identity to steal your money, but just doing it for the sake of putting your information out there for others. This is called “doxing” and the victim is said to have been “doxed.” The word comes from the posting of one’s confidential files or documents (docs cum dox) online.

Social security information, banking statements and financial records are only some of the items that may be doxed. Any private or uniquely identifying information about you should not be easily found. The more data that is available on a person, the easier security questions can be breached.

Darius Fisher, a co-founder and the president of Status Labs suggests you stay on top of this by Googling yourself often. And Fisher should know; Status Labs is one of the nation’s top online reputation management firms. Monitoring the google results and those of other search engines such as Yahoo! or Bing can keep you apprised of what info is out there.

Try to register for anything online anonymously whenever you can. If you have already put your personal information that is searchable on a database, you may have to pay in order to remove it. Fisher, recommends paying the price now rather than later.

Status Labs is a firm also working in the digital marketing and the public relations spheres. Their clients have included Fortune 500 firms, politicians, CEOs, and famous athletes. Fisher, as President, focuses on strategic partnerships and steering the company to the right clients and industry figures.

Fisher mentions other simple rules, such as checking that your social media network settings are as private as they can be. Unless you need it for your work your information should not be so freely accessed by those whom you don’t truly know. And if you do need it for work purposes, look into making two different sets of online friends – with two sets of varying amounts of private information accessible.

Fisher, a former copywriter and political consultant, is a graduate of Vanderbilt University, and was honored on the 2015 “Innovation 50” from PRWeek. This list recognized the best digital communications and PR professionals in the country. This suggests that if Fisher says you should change your passwords, you should do it, and do it often, no matter how burdensome you perceive it. Better than being doxed.

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