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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of private information online from the real IELTS exam.

An interesting and tricky IELTS topic!

Please consider supporting me on Patreon.com/howtodoielts so that I can continue publishing these essays!

Dave

IELTS Essay: Private Information Online

Many people put their personal information online (address, telephone number, and so on) for purposes such as signing up for social networks or online banking.

Is this a positive or negative development?

The advent of a digital society has led to greater vulnerability in terms of the person information stored online. In my opinion, these associated dangers are significant but do not outweigh the benefits of a more convenient user experience.

Concerned policymakers often argue that sensitive information registered online fosters widespread fraud. The majority of individuals store some degree of information online whether it is as simple as their address and phone number or more important data such as social security numbers or banking details. Naturally, this information can be stolen. The variety of methods used to steal information, including phishing emails and actual hacking of websites, pose challenges for law enforcement and can lead to crimes such as identity theft. These novel vulnerabilities that all consumers must become aware of are likely to remain a permanent fixture of online life.

Nonetheless, the above instances are rare and storing information online allows for greater ease of access. The best evidence for this is that the vast majority of individuals have decided to store personal information online despite growing cognizance of the risks. For example, it is an afterthought to log in to a website, accept the cookies and store a username, and password. The next time the user logs in, the process only takes seconds and this small savings in terms of effort and time is justifiably meaningful in the aggregate. Moreover, in the case of online market trading platforms and banking websites, consumers are willing to divulge more confidential information to enjoy the conveniences of conducting transactions faster.

In conclusion, the tradeoffs associated with storing important data online do not make it a negative on the whole. Consumers, corporations, and governments must take steps to ensure safety, while being mindful that saving time and effort are two of the more fundamental human priorities.

Analysis

1. The advent of a digital society has led to greater vulnerability in terms of the person information stored online. 2. In my opinion, these associated dangers are significant but do not outweigh the benefits of a more convenient user experience.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Concerned policymakers often argue that sensitive information registered online fosters widespread fraud. 2. The majority of individuals store some degree of information online whether it is as simple as their address and phone number or more important data such as social security numbers or banking details. 3. Naturally, this information can be stolen. 4. The variety of methods used to steal information, including phishing emails and actual hacking of websites, pose challenges for law enforcement and can lead to crimes such as identity theft. 5. These novel vulnerabilities that all consumers must become aware of are likely to remain a permanent fixture of online life.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific examples.
  4. Continue to develop it.
  5. State the result.

1. Nonetheless, the above instances are rare and storing information online allows for greater ease of access. 2. The best evidence for this is that the vast majority of individuals have decided to store personal information online despite growing cognizance of the risks. 3. For example, it is an afterthought to log in to a website, accept the cookies and store a username, and password. 4. The next time the user logs in, the process only takes seconds and this small savings in terms of effort and time is justifiably meaningful in the aggregate. 5. Moreover, in the case of online market trading platforms and banking websites, consumers are willing to divulge more confidential information to enjoy the conveniences of conducting transactions faster.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your new main idea.
  3. Include specific details and examples.
  4. The more specific, the better.
  5. Add on any extra detail that you can that is related for a better task achievement score.

1. In conclusion, the tradeoffs associated with storing important data online do not make it a negative on the whole. 2. Consumers, corporations, and governments must take steps to ensure safety, while being mindful that saving time and effort are two of the more fundamental human priorities.

  1. Summarise your main ideas.
  2. Include a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

The advent of a digital society has led to greater vulnerability in terms of the person information stored online. In my opinion, these associated dangers are significant but do not outweigh the benefits of a more convenient user experience.

Concerned policymakers often argue that sensitive information registered online fosters widespread fraud. The majority of individuals store some degree of information online whether it is as simple as their address and phone number or more important data such as social security numbers or banking details. Naturally, this information can be stolen. The variety of methods used to steal information, including phishing emails and actual hacking of websites, pose challenges for law enforcement and can lead to crimes such as identity theft. These novel vulnerabilities that all consumers must become aware of are likely to remain a permanent fixture of online life.

Nonetheless, the above instances are rare and storing information online allows for greater ease of access. The best evidence for this is that the vast majority of individuals have decided to store personal information online despite growing cognizance of the risks. For example, it is an afterthought to log in to a website, accept the cookies and store a username, and password. The next time the user logs in, the process only takes seconds and this small savings in terms of effort and time is justifiably meaningful in the aggregate. Moreover, in the case of online market trading platforms and banking websites, consumers are willing to divulge more confidential information to enjoy the conveniences of conducting transactions faster.

In conclusion, the tradeoffs associated with storing important data online do not make it a negative on the whole. Consumers, corporations, and governments must take steps to ensure safety, while being mindful that saving time and effort are two of the more fundamental human priorities.

Answers

advent beginning

digital society people increasingly online

greater vulnerability more risk

in terms of regarding

person information stored online data about yourself on websites

associated dangers related risks

significant massive

outweigh stronger than

convenient user experience easy for users

concerned policymakers worried officials

sensitive information registered person information on websites

fosters widespread fraud creates a lot of online crime

majority most of

some degree of some level of

data information

social security numbers ID numbers

banking details data about your banking information

naturally of course

stolen taken

variety of methods many ways

phishing emails emails designed for fraud

hacking breaking into a website

pose challenges have risks

law enforcement police

identity theft stealing information about you

novel vulnerabilities new threats

become aware of now know about

remain still

permanent fixture unchanging part

online life the online world

nonetheless regardless

rare not common

greater ease of access easier to use

vast majority of most of

despite growing cognizance of regardless of more awareness of

afterthought not considered much

accept the cookies allow websites to track you

process logging in

small savings little advantage

justifiably meaningful in the aggregate really means something all added together

online market trading platforms banks, stock brokerages online

willing will do it

divulge give over information

confidential secret

conducting transactions making purchases, etc.

tradeoffs downsides

associated with related to

on the whole overall

take steps begin to

ensure safety make sure it is secure

being mindful being aware of

two of the more fundamental human priorities basic to human nature

Pronunciation

ˈædvənt 
ˈdɪʤɪtl səˈsaɪəti 
ˈgreɪtə ˌvʌlnərəˈbɪlɪti 
ɪn tɜːmz ɒv 
ˈpɜːsn ˌɪnfəˈmeɪʃən stɔːd ˈɒnˌlaɪn
əˈsəʊʃɪeɪtɪd ˈdeɪnʤəz 
sɪgˈnɪfɪkənt 
aʊtˈweɪ 
kənˈviːniənt ˈjuːzər ɪksˈpɪərɪəns
kənˈsɜːnd ˈpɒlɪsi ˈmeɪkəz 
ˈsɛnsɪtɪv ˌɪnfəˈmeɪʃən ˈrɛʤɪstəd 
ˈfɒstəz ˈwaɪdsprɛd frɔːd
məˈʤɒrɪti 
sʌm dɪˈgriː ɒv 
ˈdeɪtə 
ˈsəʊʃəl sɪˈkjʊərɪti ˈnʌmbəz 
ˈbæŋkɪŋ ˈdiːteɪlz
ˈnæʧrəli
ˈstəʊlən
vəˈraɪəti ɒv ˈmɛθədz 
phishing ˈiːmeɪlz 
ˈhækɪŋ 
pəʊz ˈʧælɪnʤɪz 
lɔː ɪnˈfɔːsmənt 
aɪˈdɛntɪti θɛft
ˈnɒvəl ˌvʌlnərəˈbɪlɪtiz 
bɪˈkʌm əˈweər ɒv 
rɪˈmeɪn 
ˈpɜːmənənt ˈfɪkstʧə 
ˈɒnˌlaɪn laɪf
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
reə 
ˈgreɪtər iːz ɒv ˈæksɛs
vɑːst məˈʤɒrɪti ɒv 
dɪsˈpaɪt ˈgrəʊɪŋ ˈkɒgnɪzəns ɒv 
ˈɑːftəθɔːt 
əkˈsɛpt ðə ˈkʊkiz 
ˈprəʊsɛs 
smɔːl ˈseɪvɪŋz 
ˈʤʌstɪfaɪəbli ˈmiːnɪŋfʊl ɪn ði ˈægrɪgɪt
ˈɒnˌlaɪn ˈmɑːkɪt ˈtreɪdɪŋ ˈplætfɔːmz 
ˈwɪlɪŋ 
daɪˈvʌlʤ 
ˌkɒnfɪˈdɛnʃəl 
kənˈdʌktɪŋ trænˈzækʃənz 
treɪd ɒf
əˈsəʊʃɪeɪtɪd wɪð 
ɒn ðə həʊl
teɪk stɛps 
ɪnˈʃʊə ˈseɪfti
ˈbiːɪŋ ˈmaɪndfʊl 
tuː ɒv ðə mɔː ˌfʌndəˈmɛntl ˈhjuːmən praɪˈɒrɪtiz

Vocabulary Practice

I recommend getting a pencil and piece of paper because that aids memory. Then write down the missing vocabulary from my sample answer in your notebook:

The a___________t of a d_____________________y has led to g________________________y i____________________f the p____________________________e. In my opinion, these a__________________s are s________________t but do not o_____________h the benefits of a more c_________________________________e.

C_________________________s often argue that s____________________________________d online f________________________d. The m______________y of individuals store s__________________f information online whether it is as simple as their address and phone number or more important d_____a such as s_________________________s or b__________________s. N_______________y, this information can be s____________n. The v_______________________s used to steal information, including p_________________s and actual h____________g of websites, p_____________________s for l___________________t and can lead to crimes such as i_________________t. These n__________________________s that all consumers must b________________________f are likely to r___________n a p______________________e of o______________e.

N____________________s, the above instances are r____e and storing information online allows for g__________________________s. The best evidence for this is that the v___________________f individuals have decided to store personal information online d_________________________f the risks. For example, it is an a_________________t to log in to a website, a_____________________s and store a username, and password. The next time the user logs in, the p__________s only takes seconds and this s______________s in terms of effort and time is j__________________________________________e. Moreover, in the case of o______________________________s and banking websites, consumers are w__________g to d_________e more c_______________l information to enjoy the conveniences of c_______________________s faster.

In conclusion, the t___________s a__________________h storing important data online do not make it a negative o_____________e. Consumers, corporations, and governments must t___________s to e_____________y, while b________________l that saving time and effort are t______________________________________________s.

Listening Practice

Learn more about this topic in the video below and practice with these activities:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic and use these ideas to practice:

https://www.wired.com/tag/identity-theft/

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Emails

  1. Do you communicate via emails?
  2. Do you prefer getting texts or emails?
  3. Have you ever received an email that made you happy?
  4. Is email popular in your country?

Writing Practice

Practice with the related topic below and then check with my sample answer:

In many workplaces, online communication is now more common than face-to-face meetings.

Do the advantages of this trend outweigh the disadvantages?


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