The Quantity, Quality and Privacy of Information on the Internet.

Essay by abcvvcUniversity, Bachelor's October 2003

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The quality of information that can be accessed on the Internet cannot be determined unless there is sufficient evidence that shows it is legitimate. Also, searching for information on the Internet may present enormous amounts of results that may or may not be related to the topic that is being searched for. Sometimes shopping online may not be such a good idea because the security of private information may not be sufficient enough to protect it from being accessed by the public. Looking at the quantity, quality and confidentiality of information available online are the most important things to do when determining the efficiency and the value of all information found on the Internet.

Some information on the Internet might not be up to date or accurate, but some of it is bound to be true. Some of the sources of information might not be reliable. The Internet is an asset, assuming that those using it understand that the information retrieved is only as sound as the original sources.

The Internet should be used as a tool for research, and the information available on it should be used as a reference only. Information on wide range of topics is available on the Internet for research or personal purposes. A lot of results that are provided from a search on a specific topic may or may not be accurate or reliable. Unless you have sufficient evidence, there might not be any way of knowing if a source is correct or incorrect. If the web site, article, database, newspaper, or magazine has enough evidence that the information is legitimate, than you can be certain that the sources are reliable or accurate. Only information from greatly known websites, newspapers, or magazines can be trusted as good sources.

The resources on the Internet can advertise criminal intentions like child pornography, hacking, making threats, Spam, or making information available for constructing explosives. Child pornography is illegal in the United States and if someone views or promotes it, then those people should be considered as criminals. On the other hand, the Internet also enables authorities to search for criminals much faster than if they do everything the old fashion way.

The number one criminal activity on the Internet is hacking that inspires many youngsters. When people do not want to pay for using certain software applications, they turn to hackers and try to download software from one of the hacker web sites, which are called "warez" sites. The people who do hacking and the people who use the hacked software are both committing an act of theft, but sometimes these hackers don't actually hack the software, they buy it and put it on their web sites. This is also a crime because if you purchase a software application, you can only use it on one computer, however, if you need to use it on more than one computer, you will need to purchase separate licenses. All of these crimes can be done successfully because of lack of privacy and security that can protect authors and manufacturers of software applications.

At times email messages are sent to people by anonymous sources, threatening and scaring them. No one may ever be able to find out who sent the message or where that person was sending the message. These kinds of message are almost impossible to trace, however, if the federal government puts more security on the Internet, these kinds of crimes will become traceable. Big companies have computerized email address scanners that scan for valid email address and send junk mails to them. Sometimes the big companies buy email address from email servers and send junk mails to them too. All of these acts can be considered as a violation of privacy, and there is nothing anyone can do to stop them.

In a way we have more security because hacking into email accounts, private databases, or websites have been made very difficult or may be impossible. More security on the Internet can make us have less contact with other people; that can be either good or bad. Unwanted people will not be able to contact you or have access to your personal information unless they have sufficient right provided by their administrator. Less contact with people outside your computer may help you to socialize and have more fun alone where no one can see or here you. Modern life allows us an unprecedented level of physical privacy in real time and space. Nowadays people don't care about other people, so in a way that gives us more privacy and time to ourselves. However, in cyberspace the privacy level is unpredictable because anyone can have access to everyone's personal and private information very easily.

The quality, quantity, and the privacy of information on the Internet can be correct or incorrect, easy to access or hard to access, too much or too little, junk or good. These are the most important issues to look at while researching for one or more topics. If you have enough evidence that the information provided is legitimate and have found a way to prove that the available information is accurate, then you should be on the right track.