In the first part of this series, we went through several important things we need to keep an eye on if we want to stay safe online. In this part, we will explore a bit further. Read on to see how to stay safe online.
Rule number 6 — Use a VPN
VPNs are perhaps one of the best ways to protect your privacy online and have truly anonymous browsing sessions. They work by connecting users to the internet through different servers. The connection is then encrypted by the VPN provider who sets up a Virtual Private Network for its subscriber.
The encrypted connection is referred to as a tunnel, and they are difficult for hackers and spammers to infiltrate and obtain data on a person while they are online. Plus, as the data is encrypted, even if they do infiltrate the tunnel, they cannot read what is being sent over the connection anyway.
In addition, one of the benefits of a VPN is that the provider hides the user’s IP address. This means that a VPN stops sites from tracking your actual IP address and therefore your location and browsing habits.
Rule number 7 — Use Private Browsing Modes
Since the need for privacy has been growing in the last decade, some browsers offer a private browsing mode.
A good example is Google Chrome’s Incognito mode. Many people will recognize it from the icon that looks like a hat and glasses. These modes certainly have its limitations, but if you don’t have a VPN it’s better than nothing.
The leading privacy browser is TOR, and among the search engines, DuckDuckGo is the champion. Neither of them allows cookies or pop-ups, plus they use a secure and encrypted method for browsing. This means that neither of them tracks a user’s online activity, which further addresses online privacy.
Rule number 8 — Turn off Your GPS
Turning your GPS off on your phone or laptop in its settings application is key to maintaining your privacy while online. By turning it off, it means that all your applications (of which there will be many) will not be able to read where you are.
Social media apps often post user’s location below the posts, exposing it to the public.
The reason that this is bad for your privacy is simple — it lets people know when you are not home. This is a safety risk for so many reasons. Plus, it’s not always the most delightful feeling to know that you can be tracked and traced wherever you go.
Turning off your GPS is a simple way to stop geotagging and any danger of revealing your location.
Rule number 9 — Deactivate the Auto Fill Option
This may sound like a bit too much, but turning off your autofill option could be good for your privacy.
Autofill works by recognizing familiar words and numbers when you complete forms online. Have you ever noticed how when you type in your house number, that an autofill option comes up with your street name too? This can be dangerous for several reasons, but mainly because this information has to be stored somewhere online in order to be used for autofill.
And if it is stored online, it can be hacked and jeopardize your privacy.
IThe feature may save you a few seconds here and there, but ultimately you can survive without it, and it helps keep your identity protected.
Rule number 10 — Update The Cookies
Cookies are a way for the websites to gather and store information about your browsing history. It means that sites can use that data to analyze your behavior online so they can better market products and services to you.
On the other hand, it likewise means that these websites can sell this analysis to a third party. Given that we publish so much about ourselves online these days, it may be good to try to keep some sort of control on where data about us go to.
While not all cookies are bad, it’s good to slightly tweak your settings so that if a cookie is installed on your computer or device automatically, you are at least alerted.
Staying safe and maintaining privacy while on the internet is now as important as locking the door of your place. We are just as likely to be robbed online as we are with a physical burglary — if not more.
Employing all the above steps will help improve your protection while surfing online so that it is harder to hack into any accounts or connections to view a user’s sensitive data. Adopting good habits while surfing the web is important as it ensures you are safe from most common online troubles.
Hope you enjoyed reading. Let us know if you have any questions, we are here for you!