Why stay anonymous online?
Many websites collect information about a user on each visit. Some websites notify visitors before doing so but some collect information without obtaining prior consent. The information that identifies you can be used other than as intended.
Intrusive ads injected into websites is the most wide-spread phenomenon. More intricate ways of using the collected information include sudden limitations when you apply for a loan or for a job. Government bodies can also collect private information of people for different reasons, which is actually treated as the invasion of privacy.
Most popular ways of how to protect anonymity
Use VPN (Virtual Private Network) technology to channel all traffic via secure VPN servers that hide your real IP address, thus preventing websites from spotting your location and identity. Besides, all traffic is encrypted to protect data from hooking by your internet provider or scammers. The easiest and most accessible option is to connect via a free VPN service.
VPN is the first defense line for your computer.
- full confidentiality of your operations;
- ability to visit all websites;
- secure data transfer, which is of special importance when using a free Wi-Fi connection
Search engines that do not store user data
Normally, all major search engines record user data and user search queries, and the collected information are sufficient to identify a user even if they hide their real IP address (e.g. by using VPN).
There are search engines that do not log any user information, allowing you to stay anonymous. DuckDuckGo (exemplified below) is one of the most popular search engines of this kind.
Though most of us still prefer Google or some local search engines, consider changing your online search habits for the sake of your own privacy.
Properly configured browser settings also contribute to your privacy. Expand your knowledge of different web browsers and their settings since every time you visit websites (say nothing of search engines), you leave digital footprints.