Since the invention of computers and development of internet, there has been an unimaginable transformation in our society. The internet has two characteristics that no other invention has; first it provides the most extensive source resource of information in the entire world and second it provides people with an interactive interface to instantly communicate with each other. In this new world of internet connectivity geographical separation is no longer a barrier, people can share information, their experiences, ideas, suggestions, and problems, try to exert influence and get fast responses and reactions from friends and strangers as well and feedback that is in many cases adventurous to the parties involved.
The internet serves as a tool of communication making it easy for individuals to communicate with each other in spite of the distance between them. It is also important as it give businesses a platform for business transactions hence boosting the world’s economy. A number of services are offered though internet for example buying movie tickets, hotel reservations, online banking and much more making life easier. It also contains a vast resource of entertainment materials varying from movies, video games, music and so much more. However, the internet has done more harm than good to the society.
2.0 Internet threats and crimes
One of the major internet threats is computer viruses; these are programs that infect a computer making it run against the users wishes and eventually damage other important computer programs. In addition computer viruses easily replicate themselves making it easy for them to occupy a large memory space on a computer which affects its performance and can damage important data and soft wares leading to a system failure. Though viruses can be transmitted through removable memories such as flash disks, the internet is the most common source of spreading viruses. The structure of the internet allows viruses to be transferred faster and more effectively. Most viruses are transferred from one computer to another through e-mails web links or when information is downloaded from the internet.
The internet posses a major security threat to its users as there are no limits as to who may access it, hackers and other unauthorized persons may find ways of accessing personal information of the internet users and are able to use the information for illegal purposes. If a hacker is able to obtain the personal information of a user he is able to use it to make online transactions, divert paychecks, and create false documents with the user’s information. Hackers may sometimes be able to access the data bases of major organizations and use them for their benefits; this poses major financial threats to the attacked companies. Internet users also tend to trust people they meet online which is not advisable, this is because some of the people using the internet do not have good intentions and a user can easily be tracked down from the information given to strangers which posses great danger to internet users.
Criminals use internet services to defraud their victims because it’s not easy for them to be tracked, internet frauds mostly occur though e-mail, chat rooms and websites. The most common frauds are purchase frauds where a criminal approaches a merchant and arranges a business transaction and then uses fraudulent means to pay for it such as fake or stolen credit cards. A criminal can also pose as trader who sells fictitious products that are never delivered to the buyers. Cyber stalking or bulling is also another form of cyber crime which mainly involves traumatizing of the victim. It can be characterized by false accusations, unwanted contacts, ordering embarrassing goods and having them sent to the victim’s place of work, this can cause serious psychological problems to the victim. Drug trafficking is also a cyber crime on the rise, this is because traffickers have realized that online communications are more safer for them than phone communications hence they have taken advantage of this loop hole. The internet has led to the development and rapid growth of cyber crime and it cannot be considered totally safe to its users.
3.0 Immorality and Cultural invasion
The internet has played a major contribution to the moral decadence of the society; this is because of the easy availability and access of pornographic material on the internet. There is unlimited resource of immoral material on the internet that is available to anyone who wants to access it including children who don’t even understand what sex is all about. Research shows that most of the sex crimes like raping, sexual harassments are committed by individuals who are highly exposed to pornographic materials. The availability of pornographic content to children has made them more curious and they end up experimenting what they see, this has so many consequences including: psychological problems and addiction to pornography which leads to withdrawal from people around them. Not only is pornography bad to the children but to grownups as well: it is one of the major causes of marital problems as partners who are involved in pornography viewing tend to lose interest in the real act and concentrate more on watching and this has contributed greatly to the high rate of divorce worldwide. Teenage boys exposed to pornography tend to be sexually aggressive and do not have respect for women in general. Pornographic sites have contributed to the development and spread of abnormal sexual tendencies and preferences like incest, pedophilic tendencies and prostitution. Pornography has a physiological implication on its viewers and it is addictive, it is cruel, degrading and humiliating but it is freely available and accessible on the internet.
The internet tends to portray the western culture as more superior and these in turn leads to the lack of appreciation for cultural diversity. The internet makes people to believe that true freedom is found in the west and many young people grow up with a negative view of their culture and aspire to migrate to the west in search of freedom. As the western cultures are strengthened by the internet others, particularly those from developing countries, are weakened by the internet.
4.0 Time wastage
5.0 Education and Health
Though the internet has been a major contributor to the growth and development of all disciplines of education, it has also had negative impacts on education as a whole. Students have developed spelling skills that are more dependent on abbreviating words and phrases, communicating through text based symbols and intentionally misspelling words. Students who are more accustomed to chatting on social networks find it hard to adapt to the traditional ways of communicating necessary to passing grades. Students also end up being lazy when it comes to doing research and term papers as most tend to look for easy ways out when doing their research papers and they end up not learning what they were supposed to learn by doing proper research. Most students submit plagiarized research papers from the internet hence lowering the quality of education and producing less competent graduates from universities which in turn affect the quality of human resource in the professional arena.
According to research the music and movie industries loose over five billion US dollars every year to piracy, this is because music and movies are easily uploaded and downloaded from the net and shared between countless people within a very short period of time after they have been made public. There are countless websites that are involved in pirating and sharing music and movies. The original owners loose out on these profits as pirates copy and resell their products. It is very hard to end piracy as it is carried out by thousands of internet users from all over the world. Pirated content is cheaper than the original thus making it more affordable and easy to sell since most people don’t want to spend much. The ability to listen to music and watch movie online for free is quickly substituting buying of the same.
Although the internet has made life easier for people in many ways it has many problems associated with it, this is due to the availability of a vast resource of information and ability to communicate without any barriers or limits. It can be accessed by all type of people including perverts, thieves, conmen, emotionally disturbed individuals and many more which leaves the internet users vulnerable to all this kind of people. The fact that there are different laws in different countries and the in availability of any internet governing body makes it hard to control individuals with such bad intentions. There is no specific body to control the way information is transferred from one individual to another over the internet or to limit what different age groups are able to access as there are different age groups in the society and some need to have regulations on the information they can access. The internet also does not have a mechanism to limit the amount of time an individual spends online, this make it hard for individuals to limit the time they spend online. In conclusion then internet totally changed the life styles of many people and though there are many advantages of the internet, it has done more harm than good to the society.
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