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Chapter 14. Securing Office 2003 > Protecting Your Privacy

Protecting Your Privacy

Office documents may not look like privacy nightmares, but many of them are actually riddled with data that can unwittingly disclose information about you, other people who have used the document, file locations, email addresses, and much more. This type of information is known as metadata, and if you’re even slightly concerned about maintaining your privacy, you should take steps to minimize or remove metadata.

That’s not to say that metadata is always evil. Much metadata is generated by the collaboration techniques you learned about in Chapter 7, “Working as a Team: Collaborating with Other Users” and Chapter 9, “Collaborating with a Tablet PC and OneNote.” Tracked changes, comments, and annotations all generate metadata about the reviewers, which is truly useful in a collaborative environment. However, after the document is finished, all that metadata is no longer required; and if you’ll be publishing the document, the metadata is a serious privacy concern, as well.


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