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Privacy Defended: Protecting Yourself Online by Chris Weber, William Chan, Gary Bahadur

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The Dangers of E-mail

E-mail was first thought of by Internet pioneers as a way to communicate, criticize, argue, and joke around. Its potential was quickly realized, as e-mail spread worldwide among the earliest Internet users as a medium for sharing ideas, collaborating on emerging privacy issues, and communicating in general. The fascination of e-mail quickly turned from a hacker's toy to an important means of information exchange. In fact, e-mail is one of the driving forces behind the growth of the Internet. Its quick, worldwide spread did not require too many changes to the core protocols. The security shortcomings of POP3 and SMTP were considered an acceptable risk by those responsible for setting up e-mail systems, and the risks were ...

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