Digital Security

Digital Knowledge | Exploration

Selected pages within this site were developed during studies for RMIT’s Master of Information Management (2019).

At 95%, the site design/content achieved a ‘High Distinction’.

Demonstrating exploration of Digital Security.

Evidence | screen shots or embedding the technology

  • ScreenShots | DDNS – SSL certificate
  • Google Streetview
    • 17 Winmalee Rd, Balwyn | Father capture by Google Street View car



Despite owning since 2004, the site was only briefly active with content from 2009. In 2012 the ISP advised the CMS Sitebuilder software reached ‘end of life’. The time required to manually reload content, learn and navigate Plesk ‘Help’ online files for WordPress portal was too time-consuming.

RMIT’s Master of Information Management (MIM) presented learning by coursework requirement that necessitated resurrecting a website for this domain.

While inactive, Google released a blog during 2018 stating that certain websites and domains would not be assigned ‘https’.

In response to MIM requirements, I had to reach out to my ISP and negotiate assistance to obtain a SSL certificate. This took around 2 to 3 weeks to achieve. I wasn’t able to commence work on the client brief until this was finalised.

Fortunately, once acquired it was relatively straightforward to transition from ‘http’ and install ‘https’ via the WordPress dashboard in Plesk.

The screenshots provide evidence of the time-consuming nature of the work required.


Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica 2016/17 scandal convinced me to retreat for good from social media activity. I’ve also become quite interested in privacy, security and Opt-in/opt-out policies.

Anyone that has tried to delete, deactivate or ‘opt-out’ of facebook would know that an account can’t be deleted permanently. It’s retained by in a ‘dormant’ state because Facebook continues to use your retained data. It uses your profile is to run algorithm’s on your in concert with the profile’s of your ‘friends’.

I also ‘opted-out’ of the recent ‘my Gov’ online health record.  I actively disengage from any Government attempts to record my voice, such as Centrelink (Austudy or other payments). I don’t trust Telstra to store my digital voice-print securely on behalf of Centrelink.

Comment | Other Issues 


Privacy issues overlap into self-determination and decision rights.

To sustain their business models, profit and drive investor value, Facebook[1] and Google[2] are very active in tracking users.  Each has a well documented track record in their open disdain for privacy[3] and privacy regulations.

Zuboff S., has written extensively about privacy and the devolution of what she terms ‘decision rights’: ‘the power to choose to keep something secret or share it’[4].  She underlines this with 9 years worth of survey evidence that people are most concerned about privacy supporting‘…measures for privacy and user control over personal data’ – and by extension of logic, security[5]‘.

In fact my own father was captured by Google Streetview while innocently attending to his lawnmowing. He was never given the chance (or choice) to exercise his decision rights to require that Google ask his permission to capture and acquire his image – it merely happened because Google deemed it so.

Meanwhile in UK, the entire village of Broughton marshalled itself to prevent a Google Streetview vehicle from entering their community, calling it ‘an unwelcome intrusion’. Privacy International lodged a complaint on behalf of UK citizens who protested their image was identifiable[6].


Credited with creating the ‘zombie cookie is ‘America’s largest telecom company, Verizon. Its purpose is to act as a tracking program to bypass user privacy settings, allowing 3rd party advertisers and websites to build weighty profiles of users without their knowledge or consent. Investigations have found Verizon’s ‘zombie cookie’ sends unauthorised data to over 30 other US companies.

Examination of Verizon’s opt-out policies found them plain deceptive. Privacy and security statements of its tracking ID cookie were confirmed as simply false and misleading.

Surely that consent is suspect? Or at the very least the user owns their copyright and IP of their own behavioural data harvested without legal consent? Who owns the copyright and intellectual property of the users behavioural data that was created illegally without their consent?

Is it a stretch to insinuate a link between the topic of security considerations through to Copyright and Intellectual Property? Drawing a logical line of legality through from the user to Verizon’s 3rd parties – Facebook, Walmart and say, Amazon – the link is tenable and credible.

That genie is not going back into the bottle.  How can the users’ data and personal information be secure in this situation?

SECURITY | case study – privacy violations[8]

Whether by nature or design, Smartphone’s are known to be susceptible to tracking of location data.

Circumventing data protection regulations, Google Street View cars were confirmed to be secretly collecting data from private wi-fi networks in a clandestine data sweep.

The accusations were brought by German Federal Commission for Data Protection in 2010. Although Google denied the allegation, it was proven beyond doubt: the cars ‘were extracting unencrypted personal information and payload data from homes – passwords, complete emails and URLs’[9].

With robust coverage provided by New York Times, the controversy ranged internationally as far as Canada, France and the Netherlands. 

With lawful, incorporated behemoths acting in this manner –escaping penalties both financial market and investor-related – small wonder that organised crime is also jumping onto the ‘security breach’ gravy-train.  Even Melbourne ATM’s have been known to be targeted by criminal gangs from Eastern Europe and Colombia.  Will they take to ‘sweeping’ local suburbs in rented SUV’s bulging with antenna’s looking to scoop up data freely available on unsecured wifi networks?



[1] Zuboff, S., The Age of Surveillance Capitalism – The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power, London: Profile Books Ltd, 2019  tracking by p136, 159-160, 160-161, 482[1]

[2] Zuboff, S., ibid tracking by p136, 167, 168, 243-244

[3] Zuboff, S., ibid Facebook disregard for p160, 274, 458 , google disregard for 19, 79-80, 81-82, 161

[4] Zuboff, S., ibid p90

[5] Zuboff, S., ibid p340

[6] Zuboff, S., ibid p143-144,

[7] Zuboff, S., ibid p167-168

[8] Zuboff, S., ibid  p143-149

[9] Zuboff, S., ibid p144 | ‘payload data ranged from all conceivable personal data to browsing history, online dating activity, medical information, video and audio files – sew together into workable, saleable profiles’