With the increasing advancement in technology, lots of innovations has been made to make our lives easier, but these innovations also brought various disadvantages with it, effecting millions around the world.
Internet has been in the middle of all the major technological developments of the last 20 years. And even though, the internet has made it really easy for users to connect to the world, it has also given criminals a perfect medium to do crime in a large scale. Internet is an open platform for everyone, but it has become a dangerous place for those people whose work, business and their whole life depend on it.
Most of us use the internet on a daily basis, our privacy is now at a huge risk. ISPs, advertisers, and even the government agencies around the world are constantly spying on our online activities. So if you worry about your online privacy and want to stop ISPs, advertisers, the government and all cybercriminals from further tracking and stealing your online information, then there are various best practices you need to implement to protect your online privacy from any kinds of threats whenever you go online.
In this post, we are going to highlight 8 tips through which you can enhance your online privacy and protect your online data from snoopers and surveillance activities.
Use an Antivirus software
An Antivirus is a security software that protects your computer from harmful programs and from hackers who are trying to steal your personal information. An antivirus blocks all kinds of viruses, spyware and phishing scams that can secretly invade into your system when you go online. There are various Antivirus software you can install in your computer such as McAfee Internet Security, Avira Internet Security Suite, AVG Internet Security, and Norton Antivirus.
Use a VPN
A Virtual Private Network is a great tool to maintain your online privacy. It will protect your internet connections by masking your IP address, making your real IP completely hidden from the world so nobody can trace your location. It also encrypts your online activities making them indecipherable to your ISPs and the government. It becomes almost impossible for the government and your ISPs to trace and monitor your online data. Those who have had enough of being the target of government surveillance, a VPN is your best chance of avoiding them all. There is a huge industry of VPN providers, we recommend to get a FastestVPN as it has appeared to be the most secure VPN service right now for online privacy.
Block Location Service
Location service has become a preferred technique for various websites to bombard users with targeted advertisements. These websites use mapping to gather location data and but also to help identify who you are. Almost all web browsers gives you the option to enable and disable location service. If you want to do everything possible to protect your online data then it is recommended for you to turn off location service/data from the browser. Although, location service doesn’t necessarily provide you online security, but it’s a small piece of a puzzle to keep your privacy intact.
Block Third-Party Cookies
Third-party cookies are one of those methods that advertisers use to monitor your browsing behavior. For an instance, if you’re accessing two different websites and find similar ads popping on your browser windows, chances are the advertiser is keeping tabs on your browsing information. To block advertisers from monitoring and throwing unnecessary ads, every web browser gives you the ability to disable tracking cookies. Again it doesn’t offer you complete security against cyber threats, but it does eliminate the most common method used by advertisers to build user profiles.
Use Multiple Email Addresses
Using different email IDs for each website you sign up to is a great way to prevent third-party services from tracing and monitoring your online activities across the web. If you’re signing up to a service that requires your email ID, you can simply create pseudo email accounts from sites like YoMail and Mailinator, and use those accounts. For services like Facebook, twitter and Instagram, you must create different email accounts for each platform to make it hard for third-party services from using your private information. This may seem like a lot work, but it will benefit you in identifying which website is selling your information to spammers.
Know the difference between HTTP and HTTPS
If you spent hours browsing on the internet, then you have likely seen HTTP and HTTPS on the website URL in your browser. Hypertext Transfer Protocol or HTTP, is a technology that enables easy linking and browsing over the web. HTTP on the other hand, does the same but with an added layer of protection called SSL or Secure Sockets Layer. The SSL encrypts your data when you access a website where you need to enter sensitive information. So, if you need to access a certain website but seen HTTP instead of HTTPS on the URL, you must avoid accessing it. Instead, first add HTTPS Everywhere browser extension to your preferred web browser and then access our desired website. This extension rewrites HTTP requests into HTTPS requests, and make your browsing secure and safe from third-party services and viruses.
Stay away from Click Baits
To be able to browse securely, one needs to be smart about what they are accessing. But unfortunately the internet is full of content that may appear attractive and encourage you to click on it, but in reality, it is nothing more than a fake link, commonly referred as Clickbaits. You may receive clickbait links through emails, apps, or even on social media platforms. Scammers and hackers use Clickbait links to trick you into giving them your personal information and confidential data. Usually torrenting websites and those where you can download content carry clickbaits, and this is where you can use a VPN service to avoid unnecessary ads and links from acessing. Moreover, never ever open links in emails and text messages, unless you receive them from reliable sources or from someone you know.
Clear Your Cache Memory
Your browser cache memory hold information about you and everything you do online. Saved searches, web history and saved cookies could give information about your location and your personal data. To protect such information saved in your web history, you must clear your cache memory as well as your browser history regularly. In almost every browser, there is an option to delete your browser cookies and history. Although, deleting cookies may remove all your personalized settings you may have applied, but it is necessary to keep your personal information from getting in harm’s way.
Right now there is no direct answer to complete online security, but there will be improvements in technology in future to further enhance user’s online privacy. However, you must take necessary measures to keep hold of your online security and freedom. We have briefly explained you how you can protect your online privacy through 8 simple tips and tricks, now it’s up to you to decide and work on security your online data and privacy from snoopers, spammers, third-party sevices, ISP, hackers and government surveillance.
Rafid Athar Biography:
Rafid Athar is a marketing professional-turned-tech writer who has a successful career at FastestVPN that made a drastic change when his interest in technology and international cyber laws became evident. Rafid’s love for new technology is profound and well addressed.