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Take Control of Your Online Privacy, 3rd Edition

Book Description

Learn what's private online (not much)--and what to do about it!

Nowadays, it can be difficult to complete ordinary activities without placing your personal data online, but having your data online puts you at risk for theft, embarrassment, and all manner of trouble. In this book, Joe Kissell helps you to develop a sensible online privacy strategy, customized for your needs. Whether you have a Mac or PC, iOS or Android device, set-top box, cell phone, or some other network-enabled gadget, you'll find practical advice that ordinary people need to handle common privacy needs (secret agents should look elsewhere).

You'll learn how to enhance the privacy of your Internet connection, Web browsing, email messages, online chatting, social media interactions, and file sharing, as well as your mobile phone or tablet, and Internet of Things devices like webcams and thermostats. Parents will find important reminders about protecting a child's privacy. The book also includes Joe's carefully researched VPN recommendations.

The book is packed with sidebars that help you get a handle on current topics in online privacy, including international travel, quantum computing, why you should beware of VPN reviews online, two-factor authentication, privacy and your ISP, understanding Gmail ads, and more.

You'll receive savvy advice about:

Why worry? Learn who wants your private data, and why they want it. Even if you don't believe you have anything to hide, you almost certainly do, in the right context. Would you give just anyone your financial records or medical history? Didn't think so.

Set your privacy meter: Develop your own personal privacy rules--everyone has different privacy buttons, and it's important to figure out which matter to you.

Manage your Internet connection: Understand privacy risks, prevent snoops by securing your Wi-Fi network, and take key precautions to keep your data from leaking out. Also find advice on using a VPN, plus why you should never believe a VPN review that you read on the Internet--even if it seems like it was written by Joe!

Browse and search the Web: Learn what is revealed about you when you use the Web. Avoid bogus Web sites, connect securely where possible, control your cookies and history, block ads, browse and search anonymously, and find out who is tracking you. Also, take steps to protect passwords and credit card data.

Send and receive email: Find out how your email could be intercepted, consider when you want email to be extra private (such as when communicating with a lawyer), find out why Joe doesn't recommend email encryption as a solution to ordinary privacy needs (but find pointers for how to get started if you want to try it--or just encrypt an attachment, which is easier), get tips for sending email anonymously, and read ideas for alternatives to email.

Talk and chat online: Consider to what extent any phone call, text message, or online chat is private, and find tips for enhancing privacy when using these channels.

Watch your social media sharing: Understand the risks and benefits of sharing personal information online, tweak your settings, and consider common-sense precautions.

Share files: What if you want to share (or collaborate on) a contract, form, or other document that contains confidential information? Find out about the best ways to share files via file server, email attachment, cloud-based file sharing service, peer-to-peer file sharing, or private cloud.

Check your electronics: All sorts of gizmos can connect to the Internet these days, so everything from a nannycam to smart light bulbs should be considered in your online privacy strategy.

Think mobile: Ponder topics like SIM card encryption keys, supercookies, location reporting, photo storage, and more as you decide how to handle privacy for a mobile phone or tablet.

Table of Contents

  1. Read Me First
    1. Updates and More
    2. Basics
    3. What’s New in the Third Edition
    4. What Was New in the Second Edition
  2. Introduction
  3. Online Privacy Quick Start
  4. Learn What You Have to Hide
    1. Things You Might Want to Keep Private
    2. Personally Identifiable Information
  5. Learn Who Wants Your Private Data (and Why)
    1. Advertisers
    2. Data Brokers
    3. Local Villains
    4. Doxxers
    5. Hackers
    6. Big Media
    7. Big Money
    8. Big Data
    9. Big Brother
    10. What about Privacy Policies?
  6. Develop a Privacy Strategy
    1. Fix the Easy Things
    2. Create Privacy Rules for Yourself
    3. Purge Your Info from Data Brokers
    4. Cope with Special Cases
    5. Take the Pledge
  7. Keep Your Internet Connection Private
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of Your Internet Connection
    2. Prevent Snooping
    3. Turn Off Unnecessary Services
    4. Mind Your Camera and Microphone
    5. Use a Firewall
    6. Use an Outbound Firewall
  8. Browse the Web Privately
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of Web Browsing
    2. Go to the Right Site
    3. Browse Securely
    4. Manage Local Storage of Private Data
    5. Protect Passwords and Credit Card Info
    6. Search Privately
    7. Browse Anonymously
    8. Shop Online Privately
  9. Improve Email Privacy
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of Email
    2. Reduce Email Privacy Risks
    3. Encrypt Your Email
    4. Send and Receive Email Anonymously
    5. Use Email Alternatives
  10. Talk and Chat Privately
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of Real-time Communication
    2. Improve Your Real-time Communication Privacy
  11. Keep Social Media Sort of Private-ish
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of Social Media
    2. Check Your Privacy Settings
    3. Use Other Social Media Precautions
  12. Share Files Privately
    1. Understand the Privacy Risks of File Sharing
    2. Encrypt Transfers, Files, or Both
    3. Use Peer-to-Peer File Sharing
    4. Create a Personal Cloud
  13. Manage Your Mobile Privacy
    1. Cellular Data Considerations
    2. Granting Apps Access Permission
    3. Location Awareness
    4. Photos and Videos
    5. Mobile Backups
  14. Keep the Internet of Things Private
    1. Set-top Devices
    2. Web-connected Cameras
    3. Other Connected Objects
  15. Maintain Privacy for Your Kids
  16. Teach This Book
  17. About This Book
    1. Ebook Extras
    2. About the Author
    3. About the Publisher
  18. Copyright and Fine Print