In the battle against hackers we have encountered several attacks on the website lately via TOR en VPN. It’s difficult to honor security measures when they’re abused. The Tor network (The Onion Router) disguises user identity by moving their data across different Tor servers, and encrypting that traffic so it isn’t traced back to the user. Anyone who tries to trace would see traffic coming from random nodes on the Tor network, rather than the user’s computer.
The alternative is using a VPN instead of TOR. A VPN is just one of the most convenient applications you can have on your computer system, mobile, or gaming tool in this era where internet safety is a leading priority.
It allows you to hide your online identity, location, and also the Net Method (IP) address. You are probably questioning, “What is the ideal VPN service?” You will certainly have your question addressed right below.
VPN services have become more and more popular in recent years and so you may be thinking why should I use a VPN? At its core, a virtual private network (VPN) is the encrypted tunnel linking your device to the World Wide Web. It can play a huge part in your online safety, though the details of what they’re capable of can be daunting at first.
Two types of VPN exist: one is an online safety tool, and that’s what’ll be covered in this guide. The other sort of VPN is used by workers to access their company intranet, allowing them to work securely remotely or abroad, being able to use all the same files and programs as though they were in the main office.
The two share similarities, in that they both provide enhanced personal privacy, which is the main draw of a VPN.
We tend to feel pretty secure when we’re browsing the web at home, but your internet service provider (ISP) can see and log your activity. Similarly, the government and various websites can track your activity by using your IP address, which can tell them a lot about you, including where you are and what pages you’re looking at.
The idea of being hacked at home might seem a bit far-fetched, but, unfortunately, it’s not.
A VPN will have your back if you suspect someone may have, or be after, your WiFi password – and your WiFi passwords is a precious thing, controlling who has access to your devices and home connections.
Similarly, a VPN can help people with more than just blocked streaming services. Some countries find themselves with reduced internet access as a result of government-mandated censorship, particularly in China, where citizens are unable to use Google, YouTube, Facebook, and more.
The sites we take for granted can provide important lifelines for others who need them to stay in touch with friends, family and the wider world.
This is a big problem for journalists, too. There’s never been more news to report on and more ways to do it, through print, social media, and digital publications, and many journalists are facing virtual blockades as they try to access these pivotal news sites.
Using a VPN can enable a journalist to conduct quality research into sensitive topics, whilst staying safe and secure. The selection of different VPN servers provides access to global resources. The nature of the industry means journalists often rely on public networks when on the move, and, as mentioned earlier, a VPN is a great tool for keeping safe in public – no reporter wants their story leaked or stolen from under them.
Many veteran journalists, but not only these, surely noticed that we are all of a sudden bombarded again from all-over with mentions of Watergate. Books like George Orwell’s 1984 are on display at bookstores and an air of danger to freedom of speech and freedom of the press is spreading slowly like a dark cloud over the Western Hemisphere, raising old fears.
The good news is that it is nevertheless possible to make it difficult for anyone to try and intercept your emails, the text messages you’re sending or your phone calls. You can take measures to make the lives of those who want to uncover your sources and the information being revealed to you, much harder. Of course, the degree of effort you’re prepared to take to protect your privacy, your sources’ anonymity and your data’s safety, should be commensurate to the likelihood of a real threat, be that hacking or spying.
Let’s begin by listing what you can do when it comes to communicating with a source, and storing sensitive information obtained thereof:
Beware of big names: Presume that large companies’ encryption systems and possibly even big name operating systems (proprietary software) have back doors that secret services in their country of origin (at least in the US and the UK) can access. Bruce Schneier, Security Expert, explains it here.
Always encrypt everything: Security experts use simple math to make their point: as you raise the cost of decrypting your files (say, for intelligence agencies like the NSA), you automatically increase the degree of effort expended on following you. If you’re not Chelsea Manning, Julian Assange, or Edward Snowden and if you weren’t involved in active surveillance around Trump Tower apartments, They may give up the effort even if your encrypted communications were stored. And should anyone decide to track you despite your efforts, it will be more of a headache if you use strong encryption like AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) and tools like PGP or openVPN, which are the strongest widely available encryption methods (VPN’s are used by the US government itself).But if you want bullet-proof security, you will need more than the AES encryption method. P.S. if you want to discover the year your information landed at the NSA’s hands, just have a peek here
Beyond securing the communications with your source, and protecting possible breaches of the sensitive data you get hold of, you should also avoid being tracked while browsing. Online habits can disclose or provide hints as to the story you’re working on, or worse, hint or disclose the identity of your source. Here are the golden rules for surfing the net safely and then, at the next chapter, for securing your email account:
Private browsing mode: There are two basic ways to maintain anonymity while surfing the web. The first, most basic and popular, yet insufficient way is to browse the information in private mode, an option that most browsers allow. Your browsing history will not be saved, and basic tracking technologies, which advertisers use, such as HTTP cookies, will be prevented from creating your detailed profile. But this is more of a nice to have privacy: It basically hides your browsing history from family members who can access your computer. Your IP address can still be monitored and information regarding all the sites you visited is still exposed to your ISP.
Use alternative browsers: browsers, such as Dooble, Comodo Dragon or SRWare Iron, which focus on user privacy, are limited in capabilities. You can achieve a similar degree of privacy offered by these browsers simply by deleting cookies – bits of code which have been downloaded to your system by websites you visit, that monitor your activity and sometimes even follow which content you consume; Another way to remain anonymous is by neutralizing your browser’s location settings, and installing various features aimed at achieving anonymity. To check whether you disabled all cookies effectively, you can use the app CCleaner, which also handles Flash cookies, but none of these browsers are fully encrypted. The only standard browser that ensures total privacy is the Tor browser. Tor is ugly and slow, but it will protect you and your sources. The next section will give a more detailed account of it.
TOR: This “notorious” browser, which was developed by the US Navy, allows you to operate in a hidden network, carry out private communications and set up web sites anonymously. Tor’s browser, which can be downloaded at Torproject.org, makes it very difficult to monitor your activities on the internet, or let governments or your ISP pinpoint your location. The only drawback is that it’s slow at times, a bit cumbersome – but that’s only because Tor routes you through three encrypted random relays around the world, before landing you at your destination site. You should also bear in mind that your neighbors may be shady characters.
Another option related to Tor is to download Whonix, a secure operating system that is focused on privacy. It works as an access gate to Tor, and only allows connections with Tor sites and users. But the most popular Tor OS is Tails (The Amnesiac Incognito Live System). Tails can be booted from a USB stick or DVD, and it anonymizes all information. Edward Snowden is considered a fan of this software. Qubes is another OS that supports Whonix and is recommended by Snowden.
Alternative search engines: Google, the most popular search engine, saves your search history in order to optimize the results. To stop this personalization you should click on: Search Tools > All Results > Verbatim. Or you sign into your Google account on www.google.com/history, find a list of your previous searches and select the items you want to remove by clicking the ‘Remove Items’ button.
This post was added due to large amount of attacks