How to Secure Your Privacy in 2020
In the real world, it’s easy to live a private life and not have a stalker taking note of everything you do, every store you check out, every drink you take, and all of these without your consent. Now imagine that was done to you. Just how creepy would that be? This is what happens when you connect to the internet from your device. Companies stalk you and deny you the right to privacy as they store your location, your searches, purchases you’ve made, and everything you do online generally.
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Since unlike in the real world, you don’t notice someone taking down notes of every step you take, it can be easy to overlook it as you don’t feel like it’s a problem for you. if you prefer to secure your privacy, however, read on as we take you through it.
Secure Your Privacy
1 . Take A Rough App Inventory
Once you have wrapped up on the devices you have that can connect to the internet, check out the apps on the devices. Do the devices have apps? Did they come already programmed? Can they be deleted? Can you download new ones? What do the apps do? Do they need internet access? Depending on the services the app renders, it may be reasonable for it to ask for internet access and an example is a streaming app. But when a calculator or flashlight app, for instance, asks for internet access, it’s unreasonable and begs for further scrutiny.
By paying close attention to your apps permissions, and regularly auditing permissions when downloading new apps, you’d have taken the first step to securing your privacy. Look at the permission every app asks for before you download it. If the permissions are necessary for the correct functioning of the app, you can grant it otherwise, cancel the download.
2. Understand Your Online Footprint
Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram offer a great and convenient way to reach out to other people and are also sources of information. A lot of people are aware of the fact that these social media companies sell their data but they don’t take it seriously as it doesn’t affect them negatively, and the shared data is most times used to improve user experience.
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Since social media companies provide you with free services, they can collect and sell your activity and other data. They do this in exchange for the connection you maintain with friends and loved ones through their platform. Many people fear losing contact with their loved ones and so rely on the platform that conveniently connects them.
To ensure complete internet privacy, you need to decide if you need social media in your life. Start by figuring out the ones you use regularly, and by taking it down, you would have saved yourself from sharing a lot of information.
3. Check Your Account Settings
If you realize you want to keep some social media apps, go over the account settings, particularly sharing, privacy, and security settings. The following links will take you to the settings page for Facebook, Google, Twitter, Tik Tok, and Snapchat. Check them out and see how comfortable you are with the policies.
In your settings tab for Snapchat for instance, swiping down to “who can ..” allows you change the settings of those who can send you snaps, see your location, view your stories, and if they can quickly add you. to know just how much Snapchat knows about you, tap on “my data” and you would get a link that shows it all. Prepare to be shocked.
On Facebook, spend some time on their Help Center especially the “Your Profile Settings” and “Keeping Your Account Secure” parts. Once dome with these, move on to their Privacy Basics Page. You would see that a lot is being saved about you and that would explain why Facebook knows a lot about you.
Tik Tok’s use of personal data has had a lot of controversies, and just like with other social media platforms, you should only share the information you are comfortable about sharing. There are different privacy policies for different parts of the world, and you would see that Tik Tok respects privacy less in some locations. Check your account settings and review the permissions you have granted if you are not comfortable with those.
These steps and recommendations aren’t only for the mentioned platforms as you can apply them to every app you have on your phone. It’s wise that you review app permissions for every app before you install them on your phone. If the permissions they are requesting sits well with you, then you can go ahead. Check the app’s account settings also once s=installed and make any changes you deem necessary.
4. Use Secure Messaging Apps
Different people use their social media apps in different ways. If you don’t use yours to keep in touch but only to keep up with events, then you don’t even need it in the first place. You can use a secure browser to access the information you need on the platform without putting your privacy on the line. Even though the site would still save your data, the browser would prevent further tracking after you have left the site.
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Once you have changed the privacy and security settings to something you are comfortable with, you would now be in control of what information you give away. If you are still not comfortable with the information that is required, or you find out you don’t use the apps that much, then it would be better if you deleted them altogether. They are other platforms that are secure and allow you to keep in touch with your friends and family. You wouldn’t be protecting yourself alone by doing this, but you would also be protecting your loved ones.
Recommended Security Tools
With LimeVPN, you can have internet access without worrying about your data as everything is encrypted. If you want other methods of maintaining internet privacy, there are apps you can use that have respect for your privacy. They are private messaging apps, encrypted email apps, browsers that block most trackers, and you can even use operating systems that run off USB sticks. Below is a list of some of the tools we recommend to secure your privacy:
Encrypted VOIP/video calls
Encrypted File Storage
Encrypted Browser Plugin
Live Operating System
You can secure your privacy by limiting the amount of information you give away. You can do this while you continue using the internet, but by being careful and knowing what you share and why, you can make the internet safer for you. if you are not comfortable with the amount of information the service is asking from you, there are other options you can choose from instead.
LimeVPN processes your traffic, and as such, they can see what you search for, or which sites you are visiting. since they take your privacy seriously, they have a strict no-logs policy, meaning they don’t save your data and what you do is entirely your business. Using such apps and services that respect your privacy is the best way to stay online without giving off too much information.