Online privacy is a growing concern for internet users all over the world. Data brokers, online advertising companies, and big tech giants are coming up with more ways to track you on the internet. Applications and online services collect user data, so much of it that it’s almost impossible to keep track.
The ever-changing nature of the online privacy landscape is always taking internet users by surprise. Some online services, websites, and applications collect personal data without the knowledge or consent of the user, which is even more unsettling.
In this article, we take a look at privacy risks that people often overlook.
Google Tracking Our Online Purchases
Search engine giant Google tracks the purchases made by internet users via their Gmail accounts. The company doesn’t just track purchases made from affiliated platforms such as Google Play, no.
Google aggregates all email correspondence relating to payment confirmation or receipts you receive via your Gmail account on the ‘Purchases’ page. The company says that this feature is intended to help users view and keep track of their purchases easily.
Using Incognito Mode Does NOT Keep Your Browsing Private
A lot of people believe that switching to incognito mode on their browsers when accessing the internet can help keep their browsing activity private. This is false. It’s possible for the government, your employer, or your ISP to see your online activity when you browse the internet in incognito mode.
Switching to incognito mode only stops the browser itself from recording your browsing history and storing cookies, but this data is available to other interested parties.
Most users tend to breeze through the installation and leave everything at default when installing new software on their devices. A common mistake is leaving the default router password when setting up a new connection, which hackers can easily discover online and use it to compromise the entire network.
When installing new apps or setting up a new connection, make a point of looking through the privacy and security settings and changing default passwords.
Given the number of online accounts people have these days, keeping track of all login credentials can be difficult. As a result, people stick to easy passwords and reuse them for all their accounts.
Weak passwords create vulnerability. Hackers can use brute force attacks to access emails, online banking information, and other personal data.
Ways to Protect Your Privacy
There are several ways to protect your privacy in the digital world. In most cases, you can do this by simply changing your privacy settings on applications such as Google Home.
For instance, you can delete subscriptions and turn off tracking on the Purchases page on your Google Account settings. When it comes to hiding your online activity from websites such as Google, Amazon, and Facebook, you need to take stronger measures such as using a VPN.
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) presents an effective way for users to browse the internet without leaving any traces. A VPN gives you complete anonymity when surfing the web.
A secure VPN encrypts your internet connection and hides your IP address, allowing you to change your location to any country or region you prefer. Installing a VPN on your computer can help protect you against the aforementioned privacy risks.