The world used to be a simpler place. News didn’t travel very fast, or very far, and the only people to be interested in your private life were your priest and the taxman. The Internet changed that, and now every single thing you do online seems to be of value to some obscure business or corporation.

Even your government wants to spy on you. And although the totally totalitarian idea of installing Black Boxes to monitor the population of the UK looks like being scrapped, the remaining parts of the “Snooper’s Charter” still sound like something straight out of Orwell’s 1984. Across the Atlantic, CISPA will see personal information exchanged between companies and government agencies, without the danger of being sued by owners of that information.

It’s not all doom and gloom though. New legislation coming into effect this month will give users the power over cookies – little bits of code that a website installs on users’ systems to identify and track individual visitors. By the way, the term “cookie” derives from UNIX objects called magic cookies that were used as tokens to identify data. No cookies – no data.

Being aware of the issues of data privacy can keep you safe from hackers, spam and greedy copyright holders. How about testing your knowledge and taking our quiz?

Take the Quiz!

And if you score well on this quiz, try some of our others.

If you have any comments or quibbles on the questions, let us know through the comments on this page.

Max Smolaks

Max 'Beast from the East' Smolaks covers open source, public sector, startups and technology of the future at TechWeekEurope. If you find him looking lost on the streets of London, feed him coffee and sugar.

View Comments

  • deleting cookies will not delete form history, at least in firefox, there is a seperate option for it.

  • The question about which section (help, account or privacy settings) in Facebook allows one to do something is very hard to answer for people that don't use Facebook.
    Ironically, this quiz being about privacy, it will cause some people that care so much about their privacy that they don't use Facebook to score lower results.

  • This is a pretty useless quiz - no one who is really concerned about their privacy would be on Facebook or Twitter, and therefore would not be able to answer a large chunk of the questions!

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