Steps Taken to Increase Internet Security
Technology and overall internet dependency are at an all-time high, we as a society rely on the internet for almost everything in our day to day lives. Each passing week, however, we see more cases of privacy violation and security breaches from large trusted entities holding our most personal and sensitive information. The truth of the matter is, we really do not have much control over most of these events, but what we do have control over is how we use and interact with the internet. Whether it be just using the internet for shopping or something more important like updating health record information on a hospital portal, either way, every bit of information or activity you put out there could give potential malicious actors ammo for an attack. Below are some high-level controls you can do to actively protect your self from watchful eyes when utilizing the internet.
Utilize a VPN service One of the best steps you can take for your personal internet security to use a VPN service. A VPN will obfuscate your IP address, geo-location and even encrypt your traffic for you. This prevents man in the middle attacks, session hijacking, and it also disallows your ISP (internet service provider) from being able to see your search activity. For more information around how to get started with a VPN, check out what RingVPN has to offer for individual users.
Incognito mode Incognito mode is designed not to log or track any activity you do while in that browser session. This is a great option to use when utilizing a computer or device that is not your own personal device. Incognito mode will not encrypt your connection or disallows the sites our visited to collect your network information. It is merely a way to prevent browser caching on that device. Incognito is a quick and easy win as it is built into all browsers (under different names) and is very simple to enable.
Disable unused or unwanted settings It is essential that you go through your browser settings and disable any features that you are not actively using. Things like cookies, cache and geo-location tracking are all built in by default to help improve your overall experience on the browser, but at the expense of giving up your privacy. Companies like Google and Amazon love these settings as they can also be used along with your search history to target ads more specific to your wants and needs.
**Disable system settings ** Another best practice is to understand what features are enabled on your operating system in general. Things like firewall settings, camera, and microphone are options that if allowed, can provide a lot of very personal information if your machine is ever compromised. Steps you can take to protect yourself include covering your camera lens when not in use as well as disabling your microphone. Your firewall should be turned on at all times and have a “block all” set for all incoming traffic. You should only allow connections that you are fully aware of the reason behind them. This will help prevent unwanted entities from accessing/controlling your devices.
Utilize an Ad-block solution Last but not least, it is highly recommended that you use an Ad-Block solution in your browser. Most browsers have a plugin you can download and quickly enable/disable as needed. This will prevent websites the ability to scrap your session for identifying information that will be used mostly for advertising purposes, but it also will reduce the number of popup ads you receive overall as well.