sharing public links

Sharing Public Links | Data Security

Data Security: How Safe is it to Share a Public Link?

Link sharing is so common that we don’t even think about what we are doing when we copy and paste a link. But thinking twice before sharing public links to an interesting article could help protect you from cybercriminals

Here’s why link sharing has become so risky and what you can do to stay safe – while staying social – online.

Think before you link

There’s no doubt that hyperlinks are one of the major inventions that made the rapid progress of the internet possible. After all, they give us a simple way to link pages within a single site or refer to other URLs.

Without links, websites simply wouldn’t function, and Google would lose one of the major criteria it uses to rank websites on the search results page. But for all the great functionality that links offer, they also present their share of risks.

In general, there are three main online security threats that could occur every time you share a link.

  1. Privacy concerns. Linking to a Google Drive or Dropbox folder containing sensitive information could result in major data losses if it falls into the wrong hands.
  2. No user trail. A public link can be accessed by anyone and even with the best analytics you won’t know who actually clicked on it – and potentially viewed sensitive information or downloaded it.
  3. No passwords required. A normal hyperlink doesn’t require a password to access it, leaving sensitive information potentially exposed.

In addition, a major issue can arise if there’s a typo in your link, which creates a brand new link that previously didn’t exist. This new domain could be noticed by cybercriminals, registered, and populated with malware or other damaging software.

If a social media post containing the erroneous link happens to go viral, millions of internet users could be affected.

How to share data safely online

To avoid the data privacy pitfalls that come with link sharing,  you’ll want to opt for alternative ways of sharing information.

Encrypted email, private groups on slack and WhatsApp, and private networks are some alternatives that will let you share information without exposing your business to significant online risks.

Keep your data safe with secure cloud storage

Being conscious of online security threats is one part of an overall strategy that can help you to secure your data.

Secure cloud storage will let you build a fortress around your valuable files and ensure that they don’t end up in the wrong hands. To protect your data today, choose from our range of packages for business and personal users.