Personal information safety continues to be a debate as the influx of different social media and anonymous mobile apps continues to be a travesty. The need to have anonymous internet activities that help users have absolute internet anonymity remains a challenge. Currently, Android phones are the first thing one touches in the morning and perhaps, the last before falling asleep.
Worryingly, without proper measures, one’s name and face are revealed to third parties any time they use the internet or social media platforms. While the only way to stay anonymous is not to go online at all, different approaches will help control levels of spying that in turn, help internet users to remain anonymous.
For a user to access internet they need browsers. However, these browsers need to be safe. The first step to staying safe online using these browsers is to ensure that browsers are not storing information about your identities. Users can go to settings option from their browser and turn off the browser from storing passwords for other sites and services online. This approach will ensure data security and privacy and especially, to browsing histories, images, cookie files, and previous downloads.
Common browsers such as Firefox and Google Chrome are developed using anonymous surfing modes that further, compromise one’s anonymity. In Google Chrome, for instance, the surfing mode is called Incognito and users need to press Ctrl + Shift +N to disable the mode to allow anonymity and privacy of data on pages visited.
Some browsers offer track option which will, in turn, compromise one’s safety online. Having safe browsers would thus mean, turning on the option of ‘Do Not Track’ found in the browsers’ privacy settings. In some cases, users’ safety is not guaranteed online even after turning on ‘Do Not Track’ therefore, to be safe, there could be a need to install other software such as Ghostery browser to block trackers.
Proxies and VPNs
Users’ IP help provide specific information about the geographical location and specifically, search engines and social networks use IPs to track online activities. The best approach that can help one stay safe online is adopting proxies and virtual private networks (VPNs).
Proxies and VPNs will ensure that people do not gather information about your internet activities, because your identity will appear to be someone else in a different location. With proxies and VPNs, data security, and privacy will be guaranteed because your true identities will be hidden.
The first step that helps adopt proxies and VPNs is to check and validate whether your assigned domain name server is leaking information. When proxies and VPNs are installed on Android smartphones or any other personal computer users will be able to browse through secure servers as allocated by the proxies and VPN providers. All information, data, and downloads between your devices and proxies and VPNs are securely encrypted because the program will change the IP address assigned to your devices.
The proxies and VPNs further guarantee data privacy since the encrypted information will be hidden from internet service providers (ISP) and government agencies by specifically, geo-proofing the location, allowing person to person (P2P) download, and protecting scammers and hackers from unauthorized access especially, when people use unidentified Wi-Fi networks.
Anonymous texts on the internet form an integral part of communication, however, keeping data sent secure and confidential remains a challenge. In as much emailing has revolutionized communication online, if not checked, personal information is leaked through emails sent. However, different approaches help ensure users send anonymous e-mails.
One of the best strategies for sending emails that ensure data privacy online is to use ProtonMail. The program will guarantee that data and information sent from your IP address do not include any personal information. The program also helps hide users’ email information from other internet users since it is designed to work through the Tor network. The program further encrypts the email data besides the two-factor authentication that warranties anonymity and ensure online data safety.
With secure Gmail accounts, users will be guaranteed encrypted emails. Working with secure Gmail further ensures that no one will decrypt the encrypted messages without unique password users have. At least, with secure Gmail, not even your internet service providers, the government or ProtonMail employees will have access to the email.
Using mailvelope ensures that personal information is safe, either from personal computers or android phones. The program also guarantees security-centric emailing processes that help generate end-to-end data encryption. Once the data is encrypted, only the sender and the recipient of the email can access and read the information.
Turn off Plug-ins
One of the online safety tips is to check whether plugins users install leak information to third party software or application developers. Turning off plug-ins ensure that all the apps installed do not access your information differently. While setting browsers to be anonymous provide the reprieve from data access and loss, third-party browser plugins from search engines may continue to store personal information that in turn, may be leaked to third parties.
To be safe online, one has to recognize that browsers will be working with third-party software and apps. However, proceeding with care involves turning off some of the plugins. Nonetheless, security and staying anonymous has to be balanced since the two cannot work together. To have a single solution that can be fool-proof, users can check their search engine setting sections and turn off plugins that send their internet activities.
Adding hypertext transfer protocols (https) before the keyword to be searched ensures that the information sent is encrypted. Users should consider adding https, especially where they have not turned off plug-ins because some plug-ins attempt to decrypt some information transmitted from some browsers.
Interestingly, internet service providers such as Google would want to read your internet activities from your location and devices that access their servers so that they can reconfigure and place the corresponding advertisement on Gmail or any other services associated with them. Therefore, adding https will come with built-in data encryption tools that ensure confidentially and anonymity to third-party internet users.
There is a lot of challenges and fears that come with posting photos, status updates, and selfie on social media platforms. For data privacy using social media platforms, there are anonymous social applications users share on social media without worrying about their confidentialities and identities.
One of the social apps is Whisper that allows users to post on social media without revealing their identities. With the app, users can update their status, post photos and comment, however, activities on any social media platform is confidential such that identities are hidden from third-party users.
Anomo is another social networking app that allows users to stay safe online. Unlike other social networking apps, Anomo provides users with anonymity and control on the extent of data that can be revealed to third party users. It adopts the location-based platform to allow users to interact with users from a given location only.
Psst! Anonymous allows social network users to chat or exchange information together but with their identities, personalities, and photos not revealed to each other. Unlike other apps, Psst! Anonymous collects users based on a given interest, but their data and personal information remain anonymous to others.