Category: privacy

Data Privacy Day 2020

Your privacy is under assault. I don’t just mean online privacy, I mean every day, real world privacy, as well. In the name of “better” marketing, we’re being tracked not just by our browsers, but also by our smart devices and even by our faces. I used to worry that people didn’t care about their

2020 New Year’s Resolutions

2019 is almost gone and 2020 is upon us. You know what that means: New Year’s Resolutions! I’ll let you worry about signing up for a gym membership or quitting smoking or whatever… I’m here to give you concrete steps you can take next year that will significantly improve your computer security and online privacy.

Why I’m Dropping Dropbox

I’ve been a faithful Dropbox customer for many, many years. Their service solved a very real problem for me: sharing files between multiple computers. As a software engineer (and just a generally geeky person) I have several computers. I have three at home (not including my file server or several Raspberry Pi project boxes) and

Wipe Data Before Dumping Devices

A recent study found that most people aren’t taking the time to properly wipe data off their hard drives before they resell them. The researchers bought 200 used hard drives and found that a whopping 59% of the drives still had data that was accessible, including “employment and payroll records, family and holiday photos (along

Try Firefox Private Network

[UPDATE: This is currently free while in beta, but in the future may not be.] This will be a simple one: Mozilla (maker of Firefox) is trialing a new, free VPN for its browser and you should use it. It’s called Firefox Private Network. It’s a free plugin for Firefox (which is the browser you

Choosing a VPN Service

When we surf the web, there are several ways that our activity can be tracked. But one spy we often overlook is our internet service providers. Not just our home internet provider, but also our cellular service provider. HTTPS Everywhere Thankfully, in recent years, HTTPS has been much more widely adopted on the internet. That

The Tyranny of the Default

Marketing firms love to tell us that we control our privacy – you simply need to opt out of tracking! Like Dorothy, we’ve had the power all along. Just click your heels three times and uncheck all those pesky tracking options under Settings… somewhere. Just call customer service and speak to a representative. Just mail

Big Brother 2.0

As Independence Day rolls around for those of us in the USA, our right to privacy is under attack from many angles. While surveillance capitalism is the area I tend to discuss most, our own democratic governments are perhaps the most existential threat to individual privacy. Welcome to Big Brother 2.0. Going Dark? The leaders