In this era of mass surveillance, protecting your privacy on the internet is an absolute must.With prying eyes out there trying to get their hands on your personal information, it's important that you take the necessary steps to safeguard your privacy while you go go about your online activities.
How can you protect your online privacy, though? Read on to find out more:
5 Ways to Improve Your Privacy Online
Without further ado, let's take a look at some tools that you can rely on for your privacy protection:
Use Encrypted Messaging Apps & Email Services
To make sure your message reaches its intended recipient, always use messaging apps that secure your messages with end-to-end encryption. You will come across many apps that promise full encryption, but Signal and WhatsApp actually deliver.They're built on the Signal Protocol – which was developed by Open Whisper Systems – that uses to make your conversations private.
As far as emails go, there are numerous email services like Tutanota and Runbox that offer end-to-end encryption for emails.However, keep in mind that if the recipient isn't using an encrypted email service, your message will be sent unencrypted. Therefore, getting all your contacts on board as well is important!
Employ Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication, also referred to as 2FA, adds an extra layer of security to your online accounts by confirming the identity of the user using two elements.
Not only will you have to provide your username and password, but also a numeric passcode sent to you to prove it's actually you who is logging in. Most services such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google support 2FA, making it harder for perpetrators to steal your login information and use it to their advantage.
So, enable it if you haven't yet already.
Get a (Paid) Virtual Private Network
Did you know that internet service providers (ISPs) track everything you do online and sell that information to third-parties offering the highest bid? However, it doesn't necessarily have to be that way!
With a VPN, you can anonymize your online activities and shield them from interested entities like your ISP, hackers, and even the government. However, it's advised that you opt for a that respects your privacy and doesn't store logs of any kind.
Switch Your Search Engine
Since search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing record the search queries of its users, you should consider switching to search engines that actually protect your privacy. StartPage, Qwant, and DuckDuckGo are some excellent private search engines available at your disposal.They don't track anything that you do online, come with some interesting features, and search volumes on these sites have been steadily increasing over the past few years as well.
Choose the Right Browser Add-ons
You can also protect your online privacy by installing browser add-ons like Ghostery and .
The former will ensure your browsing sessions are free from any kind of tracking, while the latter secures you from attacks and eavesdropping by automatically redirecting you to the encrypted version of a website you're visiting. While it won't make you completely invisible, it will keep any and all information that you submit to a website private.
Though the services and apps discussed above will go a long way in improving your privacy online, you still need to be very careful with what you do on the internet. Don't trust every website with your personal information, think before posting anything and, of course, make sure to keep all software up-to-date.Those updates not only add new features and fix bugs but also patch any vulnerabilities.