My email address is [CENSORED]

In this week's column, Davey Winder looks at whether businesses should keep email addresses secret.

Demonising social networks is not the answer, however, and is reminiscent of how the internet itself was treated with suspicion by the business world 15 or 20 years back. I could drag out any amount of research statistics ad nauseam to show that the internet can be a dangerous place for your business to be (malware, fraud, viruses, brand damage, yada yada yada) but if I suggested you told your staff not to use the internet on pain of death, I would quite rightly be thought of as idiotic.

Not that I'm suggesting Websense or Mr Leonard are idiotic, I hasten to add, just that in this particular case I think some of the advice being given is misguided. Which is a shame as some of the advice is worthy of following, such as "treat emails from friends linking you to other sites with caution" and "never use passwords that can be inferred from publicly accessible information." But, seriously, please don't tell me that my email address should be kept secret...

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