ARTICLES, INTERNET SAFETY. FACTS ABOUT CYBER BULLYING
Teens Guide to Online Anonymity
With the increased occurrence of privacy breaches on the Internet, it is important to consider the topic of online anonymity for teenagers. Teenagers tend to spend a lot of time on the Internet leaving bits and pieces about themselves in the process. The Internet interconnects several sources. So information left on the web can get to sources one is not aware of, sometimes bad sources.
It’s never too early to raise the topic of online security. Also, considering the time teenagers spend on the Internet which research has estimated to be around 9 hours, they are the right population to target on discussions about online anonymity. Some of the ways of staying anonymous on the Internet are quite simple and straightforward. Others involve more commitment. We’ve put together a few ways to stay anonymous and safe on the Internet.
Why does a teenager need to stay anonymous on the Internet?
Anonymity on the Internet is necessary for enhanced online security and safety. Apart from sharing information left on the web with legitimate sources, hackers can also access private information from one’s online activity if necessary precautionary measures are not taken.
Below are some tips for online anonymity.
Give little personal information and keep passwords safe
This is the basic tool for staying anonymous and enjoying improved safety on the Internet. From social media to different websites one may need access to, it is important to give away very little personal information. Since one may not have control over what happens to the information they give away on the Internet, the best option is to give away as little as possible information to stay safe.
As a teenager, you may be tempted to share a lot of personal information to bond with friends online, but the safer choice is to share little personal information. If you need to share specific bits of private information to gain access to a particular website, you could falsify such information.
We cannot also overemphasize the importance of keeping your passwords safe. You could lose total control of your accounts on different platforms when your password falls into the wrong hands. It is also important to use strong passwords and not use the same password on different platforms.
Use private tabs while online
This is another basic tip for improved internet safety for teenagers. Every browser comes with the private browsing option, a much safer choice for persons that spend a lot of time on the Internet.
Private tabs, like the name suggests, are completely private, and this means that one’s browsing activity will not leave a digital fingerprint that will influence the content they receive in subsequent browsing sessions.
With private tabs, one does not leave cookies on the websites they visit making their browsing activity anonymous. Also, with private tabs, you are sure that the content and search results that you get are uninfluenced by your previous browsing activity. Most of the browsers on phones and computers come with the private browsing option. Another related measure to ensure anonymity on the Internet is by using anonymous means of communication or just dedicating a specific means of communication for conversations that may not be very secure. This could be an anonymous email address or even a forwarding email address to keep one’s email address safe and still maintain necessary communications.
For short-term use, opening a disposable email address is another great option for maintaining anonymity. The anonymous email address will be opened with falsified details and closed after it is used for that specific period.
Hide your IP address
A higher level in maintaining online anonymity is to hide one’s IP address, and this can be achieved with a Virtual Private Network otherwise known as a VPN. A VPN basically provides a private network for an internet user hiding their IP address.
IP addresses are the simplest ways of tracing one’s online activity, and measures for hiding one’s IP address are a necessity for ensuring online anonymity. With a VPN, all the information and data which give one gives away when they use the Internet are encrypted and cannot be accessed by another party.
VPNs are as important for private use as they are in other settings such as in business settings. With one’s IP address hidden, they are a lot safer from privacy breaches than they would be if they didn’t take any measure to ensure their anonymity.
Use private search engines
A lot of the bigger search engines share details on browsing activity to create a personalized experience for users thus influencing the search results and contents which a user receives. One way to bypass this hurdle is by using search engines that do not share information on the browsing activity of the users. There are a few of these search engines available.
It is important to take online safety important even as a teenager. With the tips highlighted above, you are sure of a higher level of online anonymity. Remember, the less personal information you give away online, the better.
Article provided by VPNpro