Protecting your internet identity

Ted Claypoole and Theresa Payton

Published by

Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN

9781442212206

RRP

£11.95

Reviewed by

Dr Mick Phythian MBCS CITP

Score

6.5 out of 10

As an American book on a topic that is so bound up with legal matters, such as defamation, data protection and child protection there are going to be obvious differences between what happens there and in the rest of the world, which perhaps reduces the value of the book to a non-US audience. Having stated that, it does examine the full range of issues in a clear and non-technical manner.

An example of the approach is that it allows for mistakes in revealing one’s identity online to have been made and assists in helping cover up again, and why this is necessary so as to avoid identity theft and similar problems.

The individual practice is interspersed with advice about what happens, or should, in the commercial world, providing best practice along with true-life stories as evidence.

Apparently the Americans, British and Canadians are most prone to identity theft, having probably the proportionately higher rate of online transactions, and that is one reason for taking care.

But the advice is not all negative; part of the authors’ aim in the book is how to sell oneself online and not fall foul in the longer term by making impolite comments on Facebook or other social media, which might be seen by a potential employer or even the current one.

It is particularly useful guidance for the digital natives amongst us (if you can get them to read paper) who may treat online good practice all far too lightly, but could come unstuck in the future if they don’t  take adequate care.

Lots of easy-to-understand, practical advice but based on an American audience and hence probably overpriced for a UK or European one.

Further information: Rowman & Littlefield

August 2012