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Access gives surveillance a red card

 

Today is the first day of the World Cup in Brazil. Millions of viewers all over the world will sit down to watch the matches, while, unbeknownst to them, government surveillance agencies and private businesses may be

keeping score of their actions. Around the globe, governments and businesses are tracking users online with unprecedented surveillance. From New Zealand to Peru, laws and systems are in place that track and monitor everything people create and share online.

In order to better protect users from unwarranted surveillance and data collection, Access created a list of four actions internet users can take today to enhance their

privacy online.

1. Secure Browsing

Access recommends using the Tor Browser Bundle which provides access to blocked websites, and prevents others from tracking you online or watching what sites you visit by obscuring your online communications. Tor also prevents websites and others from collecting data on you – most importantly your physical location.

2. Secure Email

The most popular way to encrypt your email communications is using Pretty Good Privacy (PGP), most accessible through its open source version, Gnu Privacy Guard (GPG). For help installing GPG, follow Security in a Box’s walkthrough, which covers Windows, Mac OSX, and Gnu/Linux operating systems. They even have instructions on how to install and use GPG on Android.

3. Secure Search

Search data generated by using Google, Yahoo, or Bing are all stored and can be accessed upon request by state authorities. Unlike these search engines, StartPage (also available as a mobile app for Android and iOS) and DuckDuckGo (mobile app for Android and iOS) does not collect personal information on users; they don’t keep a history of your searches, use cookies, or store your IP address.

4. Secure Chat

Jitsi is a cross-platform, free and open-source encrypted instant messaging, voice, and video chat program and is available for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS,and Linux. It supports many of the most popular instant messenger services, including Facebook, Google Talk, AIM, ICQ, MSN, and Yahoo! Messenger. For web-based secure video chat, Jitsi Meet is a free and open-source solution for the latest versions of Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Chromium web browsers.

By taking these four simple measures, users can greatly increase their ability to exercise fundamental freedoms on and offline. By taking steps to protect yourself, your privacy, and your data online, you are sending a clear message to governments and businesses – privacy matters, and mass surveillance will not be tolerated.

 

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