Is privacy on the Internet even possible? In the following article, we’ll be discussing the ways you can reclaim yours and protect it moving forward.
We spend so much of our lives on the Internet. We start our day browsing the web, and it is likely one of the last things we do before we go to sleep.
As more and more people are connected to the web, one of the biggest concerns is privacy on the internet.
So what do we do about our privacy?
This detailed guide will show you how to protect your privacy on the internet. Following these steps will ensure that you can browse the web while maintaining your freedom.
The first thing you should do is always browse privately. Your web browser will allow you to open a new window with private browsing. You should always surf the web using private browsing.
While it doesn’t guarantee that your browsing activities will be completely hidden, it does protect you significantly.
If you use mobile devices to surf the web, you should look into how to turn on Incognito mode.
Use a VPN
Another way to protect your web browsing activity is to use a Virtual Private Network or VPN.
A VPN is a software program that hides your actual IP address and assigns a new one based on where the VPN is located. It makes it much harder for hackers to track your browsing activity.
An added bonus of VPNs is that you can connect to a private network in another country. This can help you access content that is region-restricted. So, for example, if you are abroad and still wish to watch the same Netflix shows available in your country – you can connect to a VPN in your home country and see the same content.
In fact, this latter practice is one of the most popular reasons why VPNs are used.
Always Upgrade Browsers and Operating Systems
At times you may procrastinate on updating your browsers and the operating systems. Doing so can make your computer and internet access much less secure.
When browsers are updated, they often have added security features and are able to tackle previously existing security defects. The same goes for your computer’s operating system.
To ensure your security is always up to date, you need to make sure your web browsers and operating systems are always up to date.
Research Your Web Browsers
There are a plethora of web browsers, and you should research which ones are best to use. Most likely, you’ll use the default web browser that your computer comes with.
But this default web browser may not always be the best. You may want to consider Firefox for its commitment to privacy. Or there are many web browsers that have a built-in VPN. This saves you from having to pay for a VPN service.
There are browsers such as Brave that only show ads based on your interests and are security-focused. Do your research on the best web browser for your needs. Always focus on one that is geared toward privacy and security.
Cookies are used by third parties to track your browsing activity online. You may have to accept cookies to access certain websites.
However, you should always delete cookies when you finish your browsing session. If your web browser allows it, you should activate the option to automatically delete cookies once you exit out of your browser.
Adjust Privacy Settings
If your online accounts have privacy settings, make sure that they are activated.
If an internet account has the option to share data with a third party, you should not opt for this option. If you post on Facebook, you can choose to make your posts only available to your friends. This is a better option than making your posts available for the public to see.
If you have a LinkedIn account, for example, you can make it private or public. Making it public increases your chances of being seen by potential professional connections. However, it also means that more people have the chance to contact you and see your location (a requirement on LinkedIn).
You need to realize what the risks associated with not being private online are and decide what risks you are willing to undertake.
Online Communication Systems
You should use online communication systems that are focused on privacy. For example, you may wish to consider Signal and Telegram over WhatsApp.
With email, many email providers from Big Tech companies are vulnerable to hacking. It is also possible for your email data to be sold to third-parties. You may prefer a service such as Proton Mail to avoid this.
You may also wish to avoid using online communication systems if they aren’t necessary. While social media accounts grow in popularity, you should consider whether it is important or necessary for you to have these accounts at all.
The internet is a required part of most people’s lives. However, it’s not necessary for an individual to use every internet account available. It is advisable to be as anonymous as possible.
Be Careful What You Share
This may seem obvious, but many netizens are oblivious of the dangers they put themselves in based on what they share.
As mentioned previously, a LinkedIn profile requires a location to be stated. Nonetheless, if your internet account doesn’t require posting your location or making any other personal information public, you should avoid doing so.
Think carefully about what other content you share on the internet. Are you comfortable with posting pictures of yourself and your family on Facebook? These can be easily downloaded by complete strangers.
The general rule is to not post anything that you aren’t comfortable sharing with a large number of people.
And of course, sharing passwords, login credentials, financial information, personal identification numbers, etc., should never be shared online.
If you have children, it is imperative to educate them about the dangers of sharing personal content online.
Maintain Your Privacy on the Internet
Now that you know how to maintain your privacy on the internet, you can ensure that you have a more secure and safe browsing experience.
Make sure you always follow these best practices.
Be sure to read more great content about technology on the web! We have plenty of articles on how technology is disrupting many industries!