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The Best Web Browsers for Privacy and Security

Which Web browser should you use if you are concerned about privacy? From Tor Browser to commercial offerings like Comodo Dragon to a DIY approach, there are lots of options to choose from. Keep reading for an overview and tips on finding the best browser for privacy and security. There is no one-size-fits all solution for private Web browsing. Instead, …

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How To: Choose a Usenet Provider

If you’re trying to find the best Usenet provider, you should understand some basics about the differences between different Usenet providers, and what makes one more private or secure than another. Keep reading for a quick overview of Usenet features. For a longer guide to Usenet providers, see our article “Best Usenet Provider of 2016.” But here’s the short version …

How To: Secure Your Smart Thermostat for Added Privacy

Smart thermostats — the kind that connect to your home’s wireless network so that they can be controlled over the Internet — are increasingly popular. But their rapid rate of adoption has far outpaced discussion of the security and privacy risks they pose. Here’s an overview of these privacy challenges, and tips for addressing them. The biggest privacy threat from …

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How to Increase Privacy on iPhones

These days, iPhones offer many more privacy features out-of-the-box than they used to. But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do to make Apple iOS more secure and private than it already is. Here are additional steps you can take to increase iPhone privacy. Disable browser cookies. Turn off cookies in the Safari browser. This may be inconvenient, but …

How to Get Around the Netflix VPN Ban

Netflix has begun aggressively increasing its efforts to ban users of VPNs and other proxies from accessing its content. But there are still some strategies that will allow you to get around this ban. Here are some potential solutions. First, a little background. In January, Netflix started making it much harder for people who use VPNs to connect to its …

Two Ways to Make Anonymous Phone Calls

Want to make a phone call without revealing your real identity? There are several ways you can do this, ranging from using a throw-away phone to restricting caller ID settings permanently on your smartphone. But what if you just want to make private, anonymous calls occasionally, without purchasing a special phone for it? Here are two solutions. Use a Caller …

How to Use Encryption Effectively on Android Phones

Android phones and tablets have come with built-in encryption support for several years. Since the Android Lollipop release in 2014 encryption has even been turned on by default. But that doesn’t necessarily mean your Android personal data is secure. There are additional steps you should take to prevent access to your data in case your device is stolen. Here’s what …

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How To: Make A Strong Master Password

As we’ve already noted, password manager apps are a great way to make sure your passwords are as robust as possible. But to use a password manager you need a single master password. And you need it to be very strong. Here’s how to create an excellent master password. Password Myths Most people think that the best way to make …

How To: Manage Passwords Securely

Passwords are often the only thing standing between your private data and people who would like to steal it. Creating and managing secure passwords can be difficult, but password management tools make it much simpler. Here’s how to use them to keep your data private. The best way to make sure all of your passwords are strong and secure is …

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How To: Access Facebook from China

Visiting Facebook in China is hard because the site is blocked by government censorship. But it’s still possible to visit facebook.com while in China. Here’s how to do it on any major operating system. There are a few different ways to access Facebook from China. Each has pros and cons. These are the main methods: Use a VPN. A VPN …

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How To: Protect Your Privacy on Usenet

When you access Usenet, you probably don’t want your true identity to be revealed. Nor do you want your ISP or another party to be able to monitor what you upload and download. Here are tips for using Usenet privately. Connect with SSL encryption. SSL is the best way to protect your activity from snooping because it encrypts all of …

How To: Choose a Privacy-Focused Linux OS

Using a Linux-based operating system can help you avoid many of the privacy pitfalls of Windows and Mac OS X. Here’s a guide to some of the most popular Linux distributions available, with notes on how they compare regarding ease of use and privacy. If you’ve never used Linux before, you may not understand that there is no single Linux …

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How To: Maximize Cloud Storage Data Privacy

Cloud storage services offer convenient and inexpensive solutions for backing up data and syncing it across multiple devices. But if you’re worried about privacy, there are steps you should take to keep your cloud data private. The best cloud storage solution depends on your needs. How much data do you have to store? How many devices need access to it? …

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How To: Make Your Android Device More Private

Here’s a simple guide to increasing privacy and security on your Android-based mobile phone or tablet. Android comes with some privacy tools built-in. However, depending on your device and its manufacturer, Android’s privacy features may not be enabled by default. Plus, there are additional tools you can install to make your device more secure and private. These actions will help …

The Pros and Cons of Using Tor for Online Privacy

Tor lets you browse the Internet anonymously. But to use it effectively, you should understand what it does and what it doesn’t do. Here’s a concise summary of things to know about Tor. As an online privacy solution, Tor offers lots of advantages. These include: It’s free. It’s relatively easy to set up and use. For most people, downloading and …

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How To: Use HTTPS Everywhere for Browser Privacy

HTTPS Everywhere is a browser extension that automatically encrypts Web traffic with SSL protection whenever it is available. Here’s how to use it, and what you should know about its limitations. About HTTPS Everywhere Under the HTTPS protocol, data is encrypted so that people monitoring your network connection cannot read what you send or receive through the browser. HTTPS is …

How To: Check That Your VPN is Working

How do you make sure your VPN is actually running — and not leaking data — after you log in? Here are quick and simple steps for checking. Most people probably assume that their VPN “just works” once they launch it. But in certain cases, it may not be. Just because the client program that your VPN provider gives you …

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A Guide To Being Private Online

The services below will increase your security and reduce your surveillance by governments and advertisers. Here are my tips for maintaining on-line privacy: Use A Search Engine That Doesn’t Track You Many popular search engines like Google and Bing save your search history. Typically, your searches are saved along with some information about your computer (e.g. your IP address, User …