6 steps to improve your online privacy

Information technology
Source: Pixabay

Mobile devices and the internet are essential tools in our day-to-day life. However, due to the ease and usefulness of digital tools, we are rarely aware of all the information we share online and how we could be putting our security at risk. That is why we will share some tips to improve your privacy.

1. Manage advertising

It is possible to limit the information that marketers use to target specific people on social networks. Just check your advertising and privacy settings, and make sure you delete any contact preferences that the platform might be able to utilize. Any personal information that could be used to target advertisements on Facebook and Twitter can be deactivated or deleted. Aside from social networks, it is also feasible to stop ads from being targeted and tracked. On Twitter and Facebook, for example, you can do this by turning off “Off-Twitter Activity” and “Off-Facebook Displayed Ads.”

2. Turn off location tracking

Social media networks and applications can precisely track and classify places and then send targeted adverts thanks to location tracking and history, which includes photo location metadata. Disabling location services on a mobile phone for all social networking programs and the camera is an excellent way to maintain privacy. You must go to “Settings,” “Privacy,” and “Location Services” on an iOS device to accomplish it. To disable “Location Sharing” and “Location History,” and configure location access for apps on Android, navigate to “Settings” and then “Location.”

3. Don’t click on ads

Many social networks and apps track not only the ads that are clicked but also the time spent looking at or swiping through them. So that it is not possible to have the information on the interests of the users, it should be acquired the habit of ignoring the advertisements and not using the “Buy” function directly available for example on Instagram and Google.

If the user sees something they like in a social advertisement, they can search for it through the web browser while using a VPN such as Surfshark VPN in Australia which makes it difficult for third parties to track online activities.

4. Refuse permissions for apps and games

It is common for people to log into other apps and websites using their Facebook or Google login details. While this is very convenient, it also opens the door for these companies to obtain personal information. Through the Facebook settings, you can cancel permissions or choose what data commonly used applications and video games have access to.

5. Surf on social media without logging in

On some social media platforms like Twitter and TikTok, you don’t need to log in to view content. By not logging in, a large amount of data is prevented from being collected, such as the user’s journey around the network, which includes the content they search for and interact with, as well as the ads they click on.

6. Create a disposable email address

If you really want to reclaim some of your own privacy, you should start from scratch by creating a disposable email address, that is, an address that is only used for specific things and doesn’t link the user anywhere else. This makes it difficult for companies to track your activity. An easy option is to create a free account with Gmail, but make sure you don’t link it to any primary account. Better yet, you can use a different email service than you normally use so they don’t accidentally sync.

About the author

Saman Iqbal

Saman is a law student. She enjoys writing about tech, politics and the world in general. She's an avid reader and writes fictional prose in her free time.

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