Advocating to my community

TLDR: I have a community with terrible privacy and security and I’m looking for ways to help them.

As you might already know, other people’s privacy affects your own.
Which is why it’s good to get your community involved in good privacy and security practices as it’s a win-win situation.

However I sometimes find it very hard to tell people why they should care about privacy without being either criticized for it or just told that none of what I’m doing matters.

I understand that threat models differ however I am talking about the kind of people that have TERRIBLE security and privacy (putting their date of birth as their main password, reusing the same password for everything, having their entire gallery on google drive etc…) (yes I can probably guess/bruteforce most of their passwords in a couple tries but I don’t :slight_smile: )

I have already moved my close friends to signal and taught them good security practices (because they are actually willing to listen) as well as configured my family member’s phones in a more privacy conscious way.

-off topic- For those who are interested my biggest selling points were:

Ordered by most to least successful:

Password managers: you don’t have to remember a password ever again.
Brave: It doesn’t take as much storage space as Google (I’d set up automatic data removal to sell my point)
Nextdns (or any privacy oriented DNS provider): It stops showing you those annoying ads
Signal: it’s cross platform and its faster than emailing things to yourself
Newpipe: It’s youtube but without the ads and you can download all videos
-I’d also try my luck with 2FA every once in a while

However even after trying my best It still doesn’t feel enough.
The sad part is that a lot of people I know have been victims of phishing, online fraud, social media harassment, account stealing and so on… yet these same people are the ones that still don’t care about this! It’s honestly insane to me.

So my question is: How can I reach my community in a way that would matter to them and do my job as a privacy advocate?
Is it even possible considering that even the threats actually happening literally meant nothing to them?
Is it a lost cause and should I just focus on myself and the people that listen/matter?

Maybe try to relate on a personal level? Like say you’re out to bat for them, and the last thing you want to see is something bad happen to them out of something that could’ve been prevented

some people have been discussing a topic similar to the one you posted:

give a quick read. maybe you can find an answer.

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  1. educate) people often don’t know how much info they have given away. Show them that the date of birth used for their Facebook password is visible on that same Facebook page. Show them how few clicks it takes to find the relatives nephew’s surname. Hopefully, this will help them see how vulnerable they are.

  2. Simplify, the easier it is for someone to improve, the more likely they will. Small simple steps.

  3. personalise, tie it to something that matters for that individual. Maybe there bank account, or the effect on the security of their home when they post holiday photos. But start by showing them what they need to protect.

  4. political intervention, I recently reached out to my MP regarding a privacy issue, and explained why it was an issue. Raising the default standard where possible will help.

  5. Culture shift, address the culture, not the people. Individuals will follow the herd. But the herd will often not shift for individuals. Therefore, get your friends who listen to engage in a conversation about privacy, and invite one person who doesn’t care. If they are the only person in the small group who doesn’t care they are more likely to follow the herd.


Thanks for the link! I’ll check it out

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I like your take on the topic especially regarding the culture shift idea!
I will be trying these
Thanks for pitching in :heart:

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it’s difficult to get ppl to change their habits. but if you do the following:

then maybe they will think twice about what they are doing.

I can’t stop laughing picturing it in my head yet it might work :joy:

No worries, happy I could help.