In our increasingly hyper-connected digital age, each of us is more visible than ever before and while many organizations use our browsing activities to offer a more personalized online experience, we are in a sense, more vulnerable to data infringement or cyber attacks.
To put this level of threat into real-world perspective, here are some cybersecurity insights you should know:
- Last year alone, 412 million user accounts were hacked from Friend Finder sites.
- In 2016, Uber confirmed that hackers stole the personal data of over 57 million riders and drivers.
- There are more than 130 large-scale, targeted breaches in the US each year, and that number is rising by 27% per year.
- The average cost of a company-scale malware attack is $2.4 million.
Staggering statistics, indeed. And whether you’re a solo web browser or a business owner looking to protect yourself from prying eyes, here are the best ways to help make your online browsing activities anonymous.
Apply ‘Incognito Mode’ or ‘InPrivate’
A simple, cost-effective means of making your online activities anonymous, setting your browser to ‘Incognito Mode’ if you use Google Chrome or ‘InPrivate’ if you prefer Internet Explorer, will create a window that allows you to surf the web without any of your online activity being tracked. While in this anonymous mode, both browsers will also temporarily log you out of any associated online accounts to ensure your online browsing activity isn’t tracked by proxy.
Setting up untraceable browsing in both Google Chrome and Internet Explorer is easy and here are two tutorials to help get you started:
Use a proxy server
Another effective way of protecting your online identity and remaining anonymous online is to hide your IP address. If a person (or evil entity) knows your IP address, they can quickly determine the where the of the server that hosts it is based, and in turn, pinpoint your geographical location.
By using a proxy server, you’ll essentially be routing your connection through a different server, making your IP address far more challenging to track down as a result.
Short for The Onion Router, Tor is an anonymity network that can enhance your general browsing privacy by routing your online activities through a series of private networks or ‘tunnels’.
The Tor Project is run by a network of tech-savvy volunteers and ultimately, it helps web users like you, protect digital rights and identity and essentially, it’s like running a host of proxy servers at the same time. Launching Tor is relatively straightforward and you will find all of the information you need via the official Tor Project website.
Run a VPN
When it comes to online browsing anonymity, one of the most robust solutions is running a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
A VPN is a system that offers a secure and encrypted connection across a public network (like the internet) by building an almost impenetrable system over the top of it. As a direct result of this virtual wall, the closed system becomes exclusive to the owner, and only they can access it, which ensures that all of the data, both sent and received, is encrypted and fortifies against cybercrime.
There are a host of noteworthy VPNs on offer a present, but when it comes to a user-friendly option that is completely reliable, Nord is an industry leader. With Nord’s help, you’ll be able to protect your browsing activities with ease, but also it’s cost-effective, offering an excellent return on investment.
There’s no silver bullet solution with cybersecurity, a layered defense is the only viable defense,” – James Scott, Institute for Critical Infrastructure Technology
Regardless of whether you’re a business owner or an everyday digital browser, it’s clear that to protect your rights, your privacy and your identity, taking measures to enhance your cyber security and create a layer of anonymity is paramount. Try these approaches to help keep your online activities as private as possible and you stand the best chance of protecting yourself today, tomorrow and long into the future.
For more insights on how to protect yourself online, explore how machine learning helps ensure cyber security for websites.