Press "Enter" to skip to content

11 Ways to Improve Internet Privacy Access

Last updated on February 24, 2021

Internet privacy access in 2021 is no easy feat. Everyone wants our data. Everyone wants to create a dossier on us. Monitoring our every move. Regardless of whether you believe it’s wrong or even draconian, it’s commonplace. Technology reveals tremendous information about us. If you’re among the masses, do nothing. Otherwise, there’s plenty you can do to maintain some level of privacy.

Internet privacy access is really security. Anonymity and privacy measures safeguard our data from thieves and big business. Both of which are not liable for our data.

It’s no ones business what we do, where we go, who our friends are, or what we purchase.

Apple logo in silver or chrome. Representing segment that talks about internet privacy access for Apple.

Apple Internet Privacy Access

Windows machines are highly insecure. ATMs that’ve been compromised run on Windows software. Viruses and root level hacks occur far more often than on Apple machines. iOS machines are more difficult to tamper with than Windows. Merely owning an Apple product will boost your online privacy and safety.

Connecting an Apple product to the internet will immediately associate our data with an ID. Presumably, they don’t share any of this with third parties. Apple employees however have access to this information. So does anyone with a court order. If Apple is ever hacked, swaths of our data will go public.

Fortunately, we can circumvent this process. Changes cannot be made to existing computers. Even if we wipe a machine and plug in a new name. Apple will just append this new name to our existing profile. The hardware serial number is the association.

To do it right, purchase a new machine with cash. The goal is never to associate the serial number or IP address with our identity. When setting up the new system, bypass the ID stage by clicking, ‘setup later’. Enter a name of your choice. This will be your user name. Use an email from an Icelandic service, such as Protonmail. Disable all settings that send analytics.

An Apple ID is necessary for updates and to download software. So, go to appleid.apple.com and set one up. Doing it this way enables you to use a fake phone number. You can then verify via email. Use this as your Apple ID. You’re now an anonymous user on an Apple machine.

Light blue Windows computer logo. Shown at start of Windows Internet Privacy Access segment.

Windows Internet Privacy Access

As of January 2020, Windows 7 will no longer be supported. Upgrade to Windows 10 asap. Privacy however is not baked in to the operating system. It’s up to you to take, many additional steps.

Unlike Apple, Windows users can bypass account creation by default. Installation and updates are all accessible without a verified name, home and email address. However, tech giants collect massive amounts of user data. They collect the following and more:

  • Webcam & microphone data
  • Keys typed
  • A record of all our files
  • Browsing and search history
  • Location
  • System health
  • Our privacy settings through the Microsoft ecosystem

Start with a Fresh Windows Computer

All this data identifies us. They claim it enhances UX. Upon setting up a new system or starting over, we’ll be met with two options: “Express or Customize Settings”. Select Custom, then disable options thereafter. Microsoft’s key-logger will be turned off. Choose a fake user name followed by a strong password. For password hint, type ‘none’.

Use Microsoft’s Bitlocker for full disk encryption. This will protect you from root level attacks (unauthorized changes to the firmware). I don’t believe Bitlocker is available on Windows 10 Home version. In this case, use VeraCrypt. This will provide a hefty layer of protection. If your laptop is stolen, content is inaccessible without the password. Forensic machines won’t even be able to see what’s beneath the security layer.

Afterwards, use BleachBit to remove free space. Enable all the options aside from wiping empty space. Browsing data, media, and much more will be eliminated. Run this on a weekly basis.

O&O Shutup company logo. Representing internet privacy access for Windows

O&O ShutUp10 for Windows

O&O ShutUp10 is a free Windows 10 tool to counteract spy-wear. It gives users the authority to control their privacy. No need for installation as it can run freely. Some of the best features include heightened ability to control the operating system. Users can add additional layers of security, thus protecting privacy and location data. It stands between the user and Microsoft as a filter. A filter the user configures. Windows users can opt to share nominal tidbits of data. O&O ShutUp10 may just be the almighty solution for internet privacy access.

IP Masking

Hiding our IP address improves internet privacy access. It masks our location and falsifies data. It also enables us to access geo-blocked sites. Disguising the IP can be done by means of a good VPN service. In turn, encrypting online activity. VPNs are available for desktop and mobile. I’ve used Express and Proton VPN. Both of which I was happy with.

Proxy servers will also disguise our IP. Though not as nimble or encrypted as a VPN, proxies will duplicate our activity. They pose as us. A proxy stands between our online activity and the connection. Both VPNs and proxies enhance internet privacy access.

Locations can be chosen or randomly provided. Proxies however do not encrypt or safeguard our identity. VPNs are useful for full scale private browsing. Whereas proxies enable us to bypass geo blocked content. Suspicious and nefarious activity will be flagged by our ISP under a proxy.

Privacy Badger

For those of us set on using Chrome or Firefox, Privacy Badger‘s a great tool. It mediates internet privacy between content providers and their consumers. Their mission is simple. Abide by user “do not track settings”, or be blocked.

Privacy Badger logo representing internet privacy access third party tools.

Their alternate objective is to increase funding to the Electronic Frontier Foundation—the creators of Privacy Badger. They detect who is tracking you. In turn, block the domain doing so if they don’t abide by your wishes. The EFF has additional information on internet privacy access.

If an advertiser seems to be tracking you across multiple websites without your permission, Privacy Badger automatically blocks that advertiser from loading any more content in your browser. To the advertiser, it’s like you suddenly disappeared.

Electronic Frontier Foundation

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin, and many other currencies are thriving. World superpowers, corrupt government agencies, bureaucrats, and scandalous corporations all want to follow our every step. Cryptos are a mediocre way of circumventing these dreadful processes. I say mediocre because using Bitcoin over conventional transactional methods is not entirely anonymous.

Bitcoin logo showing B in a circle, followed by Bitcoin spelled out. In reference to internet privacy access methods

Crypto transactions still endure the same flaws as traditional payment methods—a centralized system. A third party is still required to complete crypto transactions. Suppose party A sends their coins to a central wallet that combines coins of numerous other parties. Everyones coins are mixed together, before sending those coins to their intended destinations. Party B receives the proper amount of coins. But because of the aforementioned process, their place of origin is unknown. Similar to money laundering. In this example, trust in party C is needed. And of course party C services are not free.

Developers are working on software to circumvent party C—free and open source software. CoinJoin is a recent solution I’ve discovered. In terms of internet privacy access, utilizing CoinJoin or a similar service, will no doubt protect our identity. The less data we create, the less of a target we become.

Cash

Cash has always been king and will continue to be. It’s the most private transactional method. The financial and tech industry are trying very hard to escalate something known as the, ‘War on Cash’. Pre WW2 there were $10k, $5k, $1k, and $500 dollar bills. They were all put to rest. The argument was, criminals can easily transport large amounts of money. They were also put to rest for reasons ranging from possible negative interest rates. To…leaders who didn’t want citizens having large cash reserves.

Today, cash is under attack—because it’s untraceable. Numerous industries want everyone using digital transactional methods. PayPal, Venmo, the up and coming Facebook Libra, etc all hold meta data. They can also be controlled. Using cash is by far the best form of internet privacy access. Our digital world clearly extends beyond the screen. Don’t be fooled by anti cash Covid-19 campaigns. Otherwise, use cash bought Visa gift cards for online purchases.

Virtual Machines for Internet Privacy Access

Virtual machine popularity has grown in parallel with global employees and remote work opportunities. They unify remote workspaces. Acting like an actual computer, they enable everyone to access the same software. Largely because they’re self contained, portable operating systems. VMs give us the ability to run two operating systems on one machine. Oftentimes they possess the same abilities as the computer thereof. In turn, using a VM for everyday use increases our internet privacy access.

VMWare product logo in dark grey representing third party tools.

I use VMs during application development as a safe environment for testing new code. VMs are widely used by developers. I’ve used both VirtualBox and VMWare.

VMs are also used to examine an array of cyber attacks. They open a window acting as a new computer, within an existing system. Viruses attack the VM, thinking it’s the real system.

If we click on a malicious link, a VM will take the hit. Protecting our computer; if we open a malicious file, we can revert our VM to a previous safe state.

A lot of sites fingerprint our systems—uniquely identifying our computers far beyond cookies and sessions. While using a configured VM, fingerprinting will be ineffective (hardware masking). Fingerprinting can be traced to our identity. Virtual machines are excellent solutions to spam, viruses, and spyware. If we’re hacked while using a VM, we’re mostly safe because there’s nothing to steal. They’re most effective with a VPN and an anonymous browser like Tor or Whonix.

Operating Systems Designed for Internet Privacy Access

Tails

Tails is an advanced, security focused OS built on maintaining anonymity and privacy. All connections go through the Tor network. The OS runs on a live CD or USB drive and leaves no trace. Tails project funding has come from Tor and Mozilla privacy organizations. Edward Snowden used it during his exposure of surveillance operations.

Tails logo in purple. Tagline says, The Amnesic Incognito Live System.

“Tails has been embraced as an essential security suite by journalists, hackers, and IT workers.”

Tech Republic

Tails is so good for internet privacy access, the NSA touts it as an extremist mechanism. It’s known as a major threat to their mission. My guess is their mission is to know everything about everyone, serving as a global surveillance shadow government.

Tails is a live system that aims to preserve your privacy and anonymity. It helps you to use the Internet anonymously and circumvent censorship. Almost anywhere you go and on any computer it leaves no trace unless you ask it to explicitly.

Tails.org

Qubes

Qubes is a unique operating system focused on security from the ground up. The OS is the software powering all user centric applications. Browsers, text editors, and graphics-video-audio-editing programs. Qubes is an open source operating system. Meaning anyone with the wherewithal to make changes may do so. Common OSs include Mac OS, Windows, and Android. These are mass produced products with focus on GUIs—graphical user interfaces. Qubes focuses on internet privacy access.

Qubes protects users from a variety of attacks. Antivirus software is not evolving with threats. There’s too many hackers. Too many threats. Too many viruses. Antivirus software may catch 50% of attacks at best. Qubes counteracts these threats via security by compartmentalization. Pieces of data can be isolated into cubes.

This process isolates data. In the event of an attack, it’s isolated vs a root level system takeover. One cube may be for browsing, another for banking. Email attachments can even be opened in disposable cubes.

Offshore Email Accounts

Supporting big tech and many blue chip companies contribute to surveillance, censorship, and cybercrime. That’s why I recommend offshore email hosting. Using these services decreases the likelihood of confiscation or deactivation by home governments. Here’s a great list of email providers all focused on online privacy and safety.

Smart Web Hosting

Owning a domain that ends in ‘.com’, ‘.org’, ‘.us’, ‘.net’, or ‘.co’ means you’re subject to US laws. These domains can be confiscated and web hosting companies can shut you down. It happens on social media and can happen with domains. Accounts and profiles are terminated for vague reasons. Even among financial institutions. Nomad Capitalist will point you in the right direction from here.

Final Thoughts

I support these tools as a result of the new, modern, dismal western culture. The massive, global movement squashing unpopular opinion. Regardless of topic. The tolerant-intolerant is both powerful, organized, and frightening. As the west moves closer to Marxism; corporations dictate law and cancel culture flourishes; safeguarding communication, contacts, and personal activities have never been more important. Internet privacy access is the best tool to combat the aforementioned.

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *