Even if you aren’t doing anything illegal, your privacy is important and, at times, calls for hiding your identity online.
It’s a bit difficult to do this on the internet, since everything is recorded in cookies and your IP address when you browse, in fact companies like Facebook and Google openly admit to tracking what you do online so they can market to you. So what can you do?
1. Sign out of social media and delete cookies
The technically savvy will say this won’t work, since your IP address is still the same and companies can track you. But, it’s still a small level of protection, as Facebook won’t be able to track who is reading articles via their Like buttons, and Google won’t be able to identify you either.
Also, ISPs do in fact change your IP sometimes, which will stifle companies from tracking you. Be careful though, cookies do get set in your browser to track you. If you want to be safe with this method, disable cookies on your browser.
This is the second level of protection. Proxies are free services, mostly just a random server, that you go to and enter the URL you want to visit. Then they show you the page via their server, usually along with their own adverts to make money.
This is the favourite of schoolkids who want to access Facebook at school when its banned, they can easily load it up via a proxy. The downside is they are usually very slow. To find a proxy, try a large site like Proxy.org.
TOR is a piece of software that let’s you hide your IP address. What happens is anyone can sign up as a node, and then people can browse the internet via your server or machine. These nodes act as proxies.
The whole service is free, although when we tested it, it was a bit slow.
VPNs are the ultimate solution to hiding your identity. They are professional servers, maintained in many countries, and have professionally programmed software that routes all your traffic via these servers.
Some of these services log what you are doing, but some even offer to not log anything that you do! So you are 100% hidden from the world via their servers. There are hundreds of VPNs, to find a decent one check out BestVPN.com.
Just to summarise, you get what you pay for. If you want to browse anonymously for free, you need to put some work into it yourself, and it probably isn’t going to be quick — you will be browsing slowly.
If you are willing to spend $5-$10 per month, you can buy services that will hide your identity online and offer quick internet at the same time. The choice is yours!
How do you hide your identity online? Share your tips below!
Image by FreeDigitalPhotos.net.
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