Online privacy is a dead concept, so there is little doubt about why you want to browse anonymously. You may want to hide your data from online trackers and advertisers or thwart various companies stealing data and contacts to build your profile. Whatever the reason, online privacy is not a complicated ordeal. This article, therefore, contains tips on how to stay anonymous on Android or iPhone.
Steps to make your android or iPhone more anonymous
Here are the quick steps towards your anonymity.
- Use VPN: These privacy tools encrypt your data and mask IPs to provide ultimate privacy and security online.
- Switch to Safe Browsers: They protect users from tracking features such as browser fingerprinting, adware, tracking cookies, and others.
- Go for Private search engines: Unlike Google and Bing, they don’t track online activity or hoard user information.
- Use Tor Browser: A tool designed for online security; it conceals your data and bounces it through nodes to avoid tracking.
- Send anonymous emails: These services allow users to send encrypted emails and don’t log user information.
- Beware of third-party applications: Third-party applications may leak your data, so don’t put personal information anywhere online.
- Disable GPS and Location: GPS allows Google and other applications to track your real-time activity and build character profiles. This information is sold to third parties.
Use A VPN
VPNs are the best-known tools for online privacy and security designed to provide online anonymity. Not only does it encrypt all of your data going on online, it further channels it through an encrypted tunnel.
Additionally, a few trusted VPN providers mask your real IP address, change your original location, and keep no logs of your data whatsoever. Most VPNs are available for Android and iPhone through dedicated apps and provide much more advantages along with privacy and security such as:
- Unrestricted streaming of Netflix and Hulu
- Helps to bypass ISP throttling easily
- Allow moving past geographical restrictions.
- Protects from hacker prowling online
- It provides convenient P2P downloading.
Setting up a VPN on Android or iPhone alike is easy. All you need to do is:
- Sign up to a reliable VPN provider
- Install the dedicated Android or iPhone application in your device
- Sign in to your account and configure your setting
- Establish the VPN connection and start browsing anonymously
2. Use a safe proxy browser
Most browsers tend to collect your data and sell it through third parties. Apart from that, these browsers may also collect your data and make it readily available for third parties to exploit. However, some of the best safe browsers are available to provide online safety and privacy.
These safe browsers are more of proxy servers that reroute your data through a secure location. Although this security is not the same as that of a VPN, they generally contribute to maintaining online security by:
- Preventing browser fingerprinting
- Automatically deleting your browser history once a browsing session ends
- Blocking tracker cookies, malware, and adware.
- Protects from WebRTC leaks
3. Use private search engines
Search engine giants such as Google and Bing are notorious for collecting your online data to deliver target searches. Additionally, with Net Neutrality dead, they may also collect this data and sell to advertisers to create target advertisement.
Hiding your IP address may be a good idea as Google tracks your online activity through it. However, another way to get past this is to use private search engines, namely DuckDuckGo, Startpage, and a lot more.
These private search engines offer robust search results and are compatible with Google search technology. The catch here is that they don’t log in any user data whatsoever. Their servers are based in secure locations, and they don’t log or share any user information. However, private search engines don’t hide your IP address, so you might have to use a VPN with them.
4. Use Tor Browsers
Developed by the US marines, the Tor browser is an open-source network dedicated to online security. The proxy browser encloses user data into layers of concealment and further makes it untraceable through relays.
As the information bounces from one node to another, amidst relays, distinguishing its origin becomes hard unless someone monitors each node available. Tor additionally masks user IP address, ensuring anonymity. For an added layer of protection, you can use a combination of VPN and Tor.
Using Tor is not much of a hassle and requires the following steps:
- Download and install the Tor app on your Android or iOS play store.
- Open the app and configure the settings.
- Launch the browser and start anonymous browsing.
Although Tor is notorious for its link to the dark web, the browser remains to be an excellent privacy tool. However, it only provides privacy and security during online browsing. There is no security while connecting to the internet through other apps; only VPNs guarantee it.
5. Send anonymous emails
Achieving online anonymity is not mainly for web browsing. As you are well aware of Google hoarding your data, you can still send anonymous emails through various services.
As emails often contain sensitive information, these anonymous email services allow you to send encrypted emails through disposable, self-destructing, and generally temporary email addresses. Additionally, they block spam and activity tracking.
Although they don’t necessarily ask for any personal information while signing up, it is still better to use them with a VPN connection to hide IP addresses. Services like ProtonMail or GuerillaMail allow users to sign up with little personal information and feature two-factor authentication for security.
6. Beware of third party applications
Android and iOS contain various third-party applications running in the background. Now, although you may have your privacy topped up on online browsing, these third-party applications can still leak your data.
Using a VPN can help mitigate such risks. Either way, maintaining online privacy is crucial, and even with third-party applications, it is better to be careful before giving out personal information.
7. Disable GPS and location settings
GPS provides utter convenience in our daily lives. It provides the easiest route to various places that has the least traffic, allows you to search up the nearest restaurants, cinemas, schools, and a lot more.
Albeit this is truly exceedingly convenient, it, however, also tracks your activity, your regular routes, likes, dislikes, and a lot more other information. This information is then used to build your character profile and sell to third parties to create target advertisements.
Therefore to value your privacy, it is better to have these settings turned off. For this, go to your device’s Settings > location. Here flip off the location toggle. You can further turn off your Google Location History.
Online privacy is more of a fundamental right to human existence, and that right is actively exploited. Now we obviously can’t stop using the internet altogether, so it is better to take matters in your own hands and stay anonymous!