It’s easy to understand the threats to your online security — cybercriminals, snooping corporations, and governments all want a piece of your data. The harder part is figuring out how to fight back. This section is your comprehensive privacy toolbox, running through every weapon you can use to protect your rights on the internet.
Top Privacy Tool: VPNs
At Privacy Journal, it’s our position that a virtual private network (VPN) is the most effective safeguard you can find. A VPN runs everything you do online through an encrypted tunnel, making it nearly impossible to track. Some VPNs can even hide the fact that they’re VPNs, slipping through the most restrictive firewalls with ease.
We’re committed to providing honest reviews of major VPNs, like ExpressVPN, NordVPN, Surfshark, and Windscribe. Our articles comb through the pros and cons of these services to help you choose the diamonds from an overcrowded field.
- ExpressVPN Review
- NordVPN Review
- Surfshark Review
- Windscribe Review
- CyberGhost Review
- VyprVPN Review
- Proton VPN Review
- Hide.me Review
- TunnelBear Review
- Mullvad Review
However, a VPN alone isn’t enough. For one thing, it can’t protect you if you use weak, easily guessed passwords (a leading cause of security breaches). You’ll need a password vault for that, like 1Password, Dashlane, LastPass, or Zoho Vault.
These apps store all your passwords behind a single master password, letting you pick strong passwords without needing to remember them. Who can keep all those uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols straight in their head without help, anyway?
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is another common tool you may have encountered before. With 2FA, having a username and password isn’t enough to crack an account. You also need to enter a code from another device, usually a phone. This seemingly simple precaution can prevent a staggering amount of data breaches.
Other Privacy Tools
We’ll also cover the ins and outs of more advanced privacy tools you might want to add into your repertoire. We’ll even dive into the inner working of encryption, explaining in layman’s terms how this vital privacy technology guarantees your online safety.
Tor Browser gets a lot of attention from privacy experts. It bounces your connection around a network of volunteer-maintained servers, adding a new layer of encryption each time, then peeling them back like an onion at the exit node. That’s where the name Tor comes from — The Onion Router.
Almost every router comes with a firewall, a tool that screens traffic in both directions and filters out anything suspicious. A properly customized firewall is a potent weapon against the spread of malware. We’ll show you what firewalls are available to you and how to configure them to your preferences.
You can supplement your firewall with antivirus software like McAfee, Norton, or Bitdefender. Antivirus software checks your computer for dangerous files, and provides a safe space to investigate and dispose of them.
In order to breathe easy as you browse, we recommend putting together a stack of privacy tools that fit your needs and your budget. With this section, we’ll arm you with the knowledge you need to make the perfect choice.