How To Protect Your Data Online

Posted on Mar 30 2015 - 7:27pm by Editorial Staff

Facebook-Sweden-Data-Center

After revelations from Edward Snowden about the NSA snooping into your emails and trying to find out where you go and what you do, it is quite natural to start thinking how you can best protect our personal online data. It is likely that your workplace uses high-end data protection software to protect its own data but the same may not be affordable for personal use. This is where these tips to protect your data online will come in handy.

Cookie protection

Cookies are the means of keeping track of what you like and what you do on the internet. Cookies help websites remember what you looked for last time and what you might be interested in. If you are looking to keep your data away from these prying eyes, you must delete the cookies on your computer regularly. A recent law has made it mandatory for websites in UK and EU to declare that the websites uses cookies, so you might be aware of what cookies do. But for the rest of the world, cookies continue to sit on your computer and give away your preferences. So, it would be wise to delete your cookies from time to time.

Privacy Settings

As the world moves towards the mobile age of computing, we have largely shifted our browsing to portable devices such as smartphones and tablets. As innocent as these might look, the devices are programmed to collect a lot of user information in order to enhance user experience. You can assert some control over this data collection by visiting the Privacy Settings option of your device and reading carefully as to what data is being collected and what is being sent through. A simple example of this sort of data collection is that all conversations made with Siri, the digital voice assistant on iOS devices are recorded and even analysed by an actual person, employed by Apple. Would you still talk to Siri now?

Social media plugins

How often have you visited a website and found that one of your friends on Facebook has been there before or “Likes” a particular comment or post? Well, if the instances of such events are on the rise, it is because of the social media plugins that are keeping track of your social media activity and displaying it to your friends to get them enrolled. While these plugins are a boon for website owners, all this happens at the cost of your personal likes and viewpoints being displayed publicly. So, the next time you are browsing the internet, log out of your social media accounts to prevent leakage of information.

Avoid the Cloud

While Cloud services might seem like a very handy option when on the move, there is always the possibility that the data on the cloud server is being accessed by unknown people for reasons known only to them. Rather, according to WikiLeaks, service  providers of some of the most popular cloud services are quite compliant with requests from government agencies to look into the stored data, without bothering to inform you. In case, you have become very accustomed to Cloud storage, at least ensure that all your data is well encrypted to avoid misuse.

Drop the unnecessary apps and the snooping search engines

Last but not the least, use the apps that you really need and stop them from accessing your location unnecessarily. As everyone knows by now, the search giant, Google, keeps track of your search history and so do other search engines. So, if you are looking to protect your personal data, avoid the big names and try using Duck Duck Go or Tor. These guys are not interested in knowing what you like or selling you products you have looked for in the past.

Data Protection software are the ultimate resort if you are looking to keep your data protected. If you still have doubts that your data is not safe from snooping agencies, we would recommend talking to an executive for data protection options.

About the Author
Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at I2Mag is a team of subject experts led by Karan Chopra.