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Protecting your privacy while browsing the internet

Many of us browse the internet daily and visit many site but did you know that many sites collect personal information about you! Its true as a website administrator of multiple sites I know how important it can be to collect some information on the people that visit your site, some of this information can help me and other administrators make your visit to our sites a much better experience and even help us fix problems that you may experience on our sites, however some websites use this information to gain money and do things we probably don't want them doing with our personal information. Some sites will sell this information to third parties so that the third party may display an advertisement targeting us. You may have went to a page where the adds all seemed to talk about things that were in your town or surrounding area this is usually because they have a contract with the site you are on and they have told the third party your location. This is only one of many examples of what they do with the information they gather about you.

Ok so what can we do about it? Perhaps a proxy server which is better than nothing. For those of you that dont know what a proxy server is, it is basically a computer that you can connect to that lets you do stuff on it like connect to a website or perhaps a chat system etc. This makes it seem like the proxy server has connected to the website instead of you, which in turn keeps them from knowing that you are the one actually retrieving the information.

Today though Ide like to tell people about the Tor Project. https://www.torproject.org/ Tor is free software and an open network that helps you defend against a form of network surveillance that threatens personal freedom and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security known as traffic analysis. What this means is that the websites can no longer collect your personal information because they cant see you connect. anonymity on the internet prevents somebody watching your Internet connection from learning what sites you visit, and it prevents the sites you visit from learning your physical location.

Tor works best with Firefox installed and makes the whole process of setup and useage very simple, it includes many monitoring tools to make sure you are browsing with anonymity. However Tor will work also with other browsers such as internet explorer to see all the browsers look HERE or you could just use the browser they offer check out Tor Browser this is a fully pre-configured web browser that keeps your information safe. Want to try it out without installing it no problem this bad ass browser can be run live, This means you dont have to install it to your computer at all you can even run it off of a usb thumbdrive if you want, very useful!

But wait!!!
Tor doesn't only work with your internet browser it can also work with many other applications across many of the popular operating systems such as Windows, Linux/*nix, and Mac and works with applications like email, instant messanging, IRC, FTP and more!

Tor also offers a live CD/USB distrobution that automatically is setup to keep you anonymous and to leave no traces of evidence on your system. They also offer a number of other projects that are of much use please take a look at all they offer it is really great stuff and the best thing is it's free!

Mobile no problem check out the Orbot Project for Androids

I encourage you all to browse safely while on the internet. Even if you dont use the Tor Project you should use a proxy atleast your information should be yours to pass out to people, not other's.

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