How Safe is your Information?
As many of you have probably heard in the news lately, our internet civil rights are be violated daily. We trade convenience for our privacy everyday and most of us don't even know it. Sure everyone jokes about, "careful, the government is listening ...Ha Ha, but what do they really mean when they say that? Is it the government who wants to know what you buy, when you buy it and who you buy it for? Is it the government that sends you targeted ads based off things that you look at in your search engine at home? No it is your local ISP or Internet Service Provider sharing your information with all of its big money friends like Google, Apple, Facebook etc and getting paid for it.
Let me carefully explain how it works. When you use a device, is has what is known as an IP address, a term often seen but rarely understood. Imagine this as your fingerprint if you will. Your IP address or fingerprint can be seen everywhere you touched something. A google search, Facebook post, or shopping on Amazon. This data is stored on servers owned by your ISP, rememberer, the guys that give you your internet. It is sort of like you are the car , and the ISP is the person who owns the toll road. You pay the toll to drive on it but aren't really sure about any of the other things they do when you drive on it. They may take pictures, track amount of cars, or observe who is in the cars to better predict traffic patterns or something to that nature. That all is fine and dandy but what if you don't want them to also share that info with car makers, police officers radar in the area for speeding, or anyone else for that matter. Too bad, you agreed to it when you checked the box that we all check when we do almost everything on the be these days.
Ok so how do you stop this? How do you rest assured that your information on your phone and home networks are safe and secured. Well, there are a lot of ways that vary in sophistication and knowledge base but a quick and easy one for starters is to set up a VPN or Virtual Private Network on your home network. This gives you your very own IP address that is encrypted and can not be traced, in most cases. This basically makes you invisible as you search the internet and prevents your ISP from harnessing your data and selling it aka targeted ads. There are a few simple steps you can take to set up a VPN, again varying in sophistication and needs. A quick and easy way to get started is to find an internet browser that allows for a VPN or block ads setting. You can find plenty by just googling "free VPN". Follow the instructions and download just like you would Chrome or Safari and then work from that browser. This will eliminate most if not all of your IP activity from being seen.
After that you can purchase your own IP addresses and also install routers with settings to prevent visitability even more. This will require a professional but is well worth the money and time. They can also set up additional firewalls or protective barriers if you will to make your network completely secure. This is just the surface of internet privacy and how you can protect yourself and your family. Continue to read this blog to stay up on the latest in network security as well as technology and smart home automation.