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Computer Privacy Annoyances Paperback – August 6, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0596007751 ISBN-10: 0596007752 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Series: Annoyances
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (August 6, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596007752
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596007751
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.4 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,860,204 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"All in all a very useful book. " - John Bryant, BJHC&IM, December 05

About the Author

Daniel Tynan has written about Internet privacy and security for nearly a decade. His work has appeared in more than 40 national publications. As executive editor at PC World, Tynan edited a special issue on Internet Privacy that won a Grand Neal Award and was a finalist for a National Magazine Award. He has won more than a dozen other honors, including nine Neals, four Maggies, and two Computer Press Association Awards. Tynan has contributed to PC Annoyances (O'Reilly), The PC Bible (Peachpit Press), and Super Searchers Go to the Source (CyberAge), and has appeared on CNN, CBS, NPR, and other national media outlets. Yet he remains humble and self-effacing, living with his family, two dogs, and eight chickens in beautiful Wilmington, North Carolina.

Customer Reviews

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See all 11 customer reviews
This makes it incredibly easy to read and follow.
Christopher Byrne
Dan Tynan has done all the hard work for us; now we just need to make sure that everyone we know reads this book!
K. T. McLaughlin
This book is an eye-opener on privacy invasion, and how it can harm you in countless ways.
Edward Laskowski

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Byrne on August 22, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you have been thinking about what to give friends or family as a gift for their birthday or Christmas, you might want to consider O'Reilly's new book, Computer Privacy Annoyances (Dan Tynan, 177 Pages, ISBN 0596007752). Why do I say this? The bottom line reason is that the average Internet and Personal computer user need a simple, easy to follow reference guide to help them understand the threats to their privacy in the online and physical worlds. In fact, the book might better have been titled "Personal Privacy Annoyances", because the lessons extend beyond just the computer world. In fact, every ISP should hand this book out to their subscribers, new and old.

Tynan does not waste any time getting to the point, discussing privacy issues at home, work, in the stores and on the streets. In plain English, he explains worms, spam, hackers and viruses in easy to understand wording. He explains what the threats are, where they come from and how to protect against them. He talks about HIPAA, the large number of organizations not in compliance, and the loopholes that put your health care information places where you may not want it to be, You will learn about airport security, and what little you can do about it.

There is so much excellent material in this book, I could write forever. I think you can get a sense for my excitement about this book. Part of this excitement is tied to the layout. Unlike many O'Reilly (or other publishers) books which can be very dry in layout/presentation, this book is presented much like a college and/or school workbook. This makes it incredibly easy to read and follow. It is also much, much cheaper than many other technical books that offer less value.

Who Should Read This Book?

You. Your mother and father. Your In-laws.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
Privacy? Good luck! Even the slightest misstep on line (or anywhere else, for that matter) can open you up to privacy intrusions that you may not know about. Dan Tynan does a really good job in outlining these areas in Computer Privacy Annoyances. This is pretty much required reading for living in our heavily computerized society.

Contents: Privacy At Risk; Privacy At Home; Privacy On The Net; Privacy At Work; Privacy In Public; Privacy And Uncle Sam; Privacy In The Future; Index

In this Annoyances title, Tynan looks at a wide range of activities and situations that involve a potential unwanted loss of privacy. Using a question and answer format, he effectively shows how seemingly innocent activities (like booking a hotel room or ordering a kosher meal on a flight) can be logged and combined to build a profile of your activities that may not present a very flattering picture of who you are and what you do (and with whom). While there's the obligatory chapters on spam, online registration sites, and the like, there are also excellent chapters that cover privacy at work (what your employers can and can not do) as well as health record concerns. Things may not be as secure and private as you think they are...

Realistically, there's already more information out there to be gleaned than you'd probably expect and be comfortable with. But by reading and digesting the contents of this book, you can start to reduce your exposure going forward. Even just the awareness of privacy concerns will start to cause you to question *why* a merchant might want certain information. They may *want* your zip code or phone number, but that doesn't mean you *have* to give it to them. Even if this book keeps you from making just one mistake that would lead to identity theft, then it's more than paid for itself. A recommended read...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Stratton on November 2, 2005
Format: Paperback
Computer Privacy Annoyances


By Dan Tynan

ISBN 0596007752

As someone who gets asked questions about Internet use and safety all the time, a book I had been itching to read was "Computer Privacy Annoyances", by Dan Tynan. According to the cover, the book covers "How to avoid the most annoying invasions of your personal and online privacy."

The quick and dirty? The book gives very practical, real-world examples of how your data can be used, yet the author manages to avoid sounding like a doomsayer... even some of the more scary scenarios don't come off sounding like sensationalism, just honest (and sometimes even apologetic) examples of what could very realistically happen. (I thank you, Mr. Tynan.)

I'll take bets on anyone that doesn't learn at least ten new things they didn't know about their privacy rights. Mr. Tynan has taken the proverbial "They" and reduced it to the very organizations that "they" really are. Did you know you can request a copy of your FBI files? Do you know who has the power view it? Do you know who is collecting data on you at this very moment and what they are doing with it?

The book's format allows for a surprisingly fast read. Well organized sections such as privacy at home, on the Internet, in public, at work, and even on a federal level allow for quick chapter absorption. In each chapter, the author states the annoyance, and then the fix. This allows for quick skipping over an 'annoyance' that might not annoy you that much.

I did notice that the author made no mention of the everyday information users give out about themselves without even realizing it, such as usernames that contain birthdates and such.
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