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September 3, 2020

Safe Internet: 3 Ways to Protect Your Privacy Online

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The creation of the internet paved the way for unprecedented technological developments. However, while technology has seen incredible advancements over the last three decades, other aspects of life have suffered. Privacy, for instance, is now a rare commodity. Many organizations around the world now hold information about you and everyone else, including your email address, phone number, name, and more. 

Personal information is now the most valuable asset organizations have. They can use it for marketing, surveillance, or sell it to the highest bidder. Your data is also coveted by more than just Big Business: world governments and cybercriminals want it too, all for reasons that benefit them and rarely you.

Unfortunately, giving up on the internet in favour of privacy isn’t possible. It’s the way people connect in a highly digital world. The only option left to most people is to strengthen your defences for safe internet use. Here are simple steps to take:

  • Browse privately
  • Think before you click
  • Use a VPN

Browse Using Private Mode or Incognito 

Most people know their web browser stores their search history, even after the browser is closed and the session ended. However, not everyone realizes just how much private information they give away by allowing browsers to store that search history. The websites you visit tell an organization a lot about you. In addition, cookies accumulated from these websites can also gather information about you and track you across different websites. 

There are a couple of ways of preventing your search history from becoming a privacy hazard. First, delete that history after every web session. Unfortunately, this option is annoying and inconvenient. The second, and easier option, is to browse the web using Incognito or Private mode. Doing so will delete your browsing history for you automatically as soon as you end your session.

However, you should bear in mind that, although most web browsers come with their own version of private browsing, there are limitations. While others won’t be able to trace your browsing history, your internet service provider (ISP) collects this information independently. In addition, websites you visit in private mode can still track you during that session, so it’s best to pair this tip for safe internet with complex passwords and good virus protection software. 

Think Before You Click 

Hackers run rampant in the vast world of the internet, but one of the most prominent ways they attack is through phishing attempts. Here, scammers trick you into providing financial and personal information, often done through fake emails that assume the identity of credit card institutions, banks, and other companies. 

Emails usually compel you to click on the link, where you will then be taken to a web page that mimics an official website. Once you enter your details, however, they’ll gain access to your personal information. Most victims end up losing all their savings or end up paying for massive credit card debt, so be careful where you click!

If an email directs you to click on a link, first check the sender address of the email, look for obvious typos in the content of the email, and copy the link address to paste into your search bar BEFORE proceeding to the website to see if it’s a legit website. One of the best ways of creating a safe internet experience is to carefully consider every click you make.

Invest in a Virtual Private Network

While private or incognito modes can help reduce the information organizations learn through your browsing history, a virtual private network (VPN) keeps you anonymous and completely private online, even from your ISP. It works by masking your IP address and encrypting your data so outside eyes can’t see your activity or trace it back to you.

VPNs are especially great for public internet connections, such as wi-fi at coffee shops, airports, and other public spaces because these networks and the activity on them are shared with others. With a VPN, scammers will have a hard time accessing your personal information, much less breaching your social and financial accounts.

Conclusion

Although becoming an increasingly rare commodity, your privacy matters. This is especially true in such a public space as the internet. Every individual deserves to feel safe, secure, and completely comfortable online. To ensure that you keep the internet safe, keep these tips in mind. And, for an impenetrable internet browsing session, it’s best to invest in a good VPN.

Good VPN protection safeguards you in every possible way and HotBot VPN does exactly that. We do not believe in collecting user data, thus keeping your online privacy, security, and freedom of information our main priority. Eliminate your exposure—download HotBot today! 

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