The Internet is all about collaboration and trust. But over the years trust on the Internet has decreased as users have become more aware of the fact that use of the Internet comes with various concessions to our privacy.
So how do we restore trust on the Internet and create a safe ecosystem in which to collaborate?
Loss of trust
The loss of trust on the Internet is due to the way businesses; governments and other parties use the technology to their advantage by gathering information about online users, without their knowledge or consent.
During a conference on Internet governance and cyber security earlier this year this loss of trust on the Internet was compared to that of the financial crisis that hit the global economy a few years ago. During this time the “trust in the financial institutions, their mission, role and ability to secure their consumers’ future was completely lost” wrote Konstantinos Komaitis, Senior Policy Advisor for the Global Public Policy Department at the Internet Society. To date consumers trust in these institutions is still low.
Working together to restore trust
In order for us to prevent the Internet from suffering the same fate as the financial institutions, we need to understand that different parts of the Internet will require different levels of governance.
Users on all scales (individuals, businesses and governments) need to work together, in order to restore trust on the Internet. One of the panelists from the above mentioned conference said, “We should not lose sight of the fact that the Internet is not responsible for the way it is used or abused by various actors.” Reminding us that it is the actions of people that have consequences. Komaitis went on to say, that the participants of the conference reminded the audience that the “evolution of the Internet is essentially an outcome of the collaborative efforts of a variety of actors.”
We are all responsible
The Internet is an ecosystem of networks that work together to exchange information. By simply connecting to the Internet you become part of the ecosystem. An article written by Mr Olaf Kolkman, Chief Internet Technology Officer at the Internet Society says, “You should consider not only how the global system impacts you, but also the impact you produce on the system through your activity or inactivity.’
Collaboration on the Internet is endless, be it the exchange of information, working to increase security protocols or creating new technologies. It is up to all of us to do our part in creating a safe collaborative ecosystem that we can trust.
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