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vpn tunneling
anonymous surfing software
hiding your ip address
vpn server
security breach
unrestricted internet
smarty pants
security feature
security privacy
Top 3 Reasons To Browse The Web Anonymously
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Top 3 Reasons To Browse The Web Anonymously

There are a variety of types of software and even more reasons to browse the web anonymously. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it is probably the most essential list for anonymous surfing advantages. Hopefully you'll find what you're looking for, and maybe find out something you didn't know. For the top three reasons to browse the web anonymously, I've divided them into these three categories: Security, Privacy, and Unrestricted Internet.

Security

Probably the most boring of the three, but also the most useful is the security feature. If you use a VPN for your anonymous surfing software, you're probably using some kind of encryption with it. If you're on a phone, you should be using L2TP/IPSec, and if you're on a laptop or computer then you can use OpenVPN/SSL. The combination of the VPN tunneling software plus the 128-bit encryption means you're protected on both ends. The VPN tunneling makes sure that you're invisible on the network you're currently connected to - basically wrapping up your data and secretly sending it to the VPN server you've connected to. Then the data encryption further scrambles and codes the data so that any smarty-pants who thinks he wants to eavesdrop on your conversation won't be able to. Without the proper keys, codes, and certificates, any hacker-wannabe won't know what to do with the data.

This is of course the least likely reason you'll get a VPN, because most of the time you won't need it. You don't really notice when you're exposed to such threats - like not wearing a seatbelt in the car. You never really need it until it's too late. The fact is that millions of Americans fall victim to cyber crime ever year, and there are millions more computers that are labeled 'zombie computers', or secret slaves to hackers, spammers, and other unscrupulous groups/individuals. Most times, this kind of security breach can be prevented by hiding your IP address when you surf the net.

Privacy

Another example of why you should browse the web anonymously, but one that most people won't follow anyway is for privacy online. Most people would say something like, "I've got nothing to hide, so what's the big deal?". But you never know what you have to hide until the knowledge of hindsight sets in. Do you keep a personal blog and blog about work or your government? Do you send personal emails that you would rather other people not look at? Ok, so maybe you truly are an open book, but not everyone is.

One big issue is with regards to health and medical issues. You might have a condition, or even just 'think' you have a condition, and search for help on Google. But what happens when Google makes a record of that? What if you click a few links and end up on medical web pages that leave cookies in your browser? You ISP knows about this. You government can too. Were you searching on your school or work network? You boss and school administrators may know about this too. Consequences could range from embarrassing to devastating.

Of course this is case to case specific. Maybe you're healthy as a horse, but you live in a country where the government takes an 'interest' in activists, ie monitors activity online. Not just China does this, and you know your government best. Maybe its not the government, but your employer. Whistle blowers are a serious risk for persecution. Some people just think that it's no ones business what you buy online, just like its no ones business what you buy IRL.

Unrestricted Internet

Though the internet has the reputation of being 'free', and 'unrestricted information', there are actually lots of restrictions placed on what you can and can't do. Sometimes these are put in place by network admins and can be changed locally. Sometimes they're put there by your ISP because of the region of the country you're in. Sometimes they're placed there by the government, and your country firewall prevents you from accessing foreign websites. It may be that foreign websites are using firewalls to block you.

One famous example of a government blocking access to harmless websites in China blocking Facebook. They also block YouTube, Vimeo, and even Gmail sometimes. They're not the only country, but they are one of the more infamous ones with rampant internet censorship.

Your employer might have blocked websites from your viewing as well. Sure, when you should be working, they have the right to control what you can and can't see. But when you have a coffee break and want to updated your Facebook status, its really none of their business.

And there are many websites that block foreign IP addresses. Netflix and Hulu in The USA. BBC iPlayer (and other BBC channels), Channel 4, and Demand 5 are some from The UK. Big Pond in Australia, CBC in Canada, and numerous Indian channels from India all block non-local IP addresses.

Did you know that when you browse the web anonymously you can also choose your IP address through a VPN service. If you want to access websites from other country you can get an IP address just by signing into a VPN server in that country. This means your IP will be local, and you'll be able to access sites from that country just as if you were actually there.


Street Talk

Very informative article Rodders... I agree with you that we certainly seem to be moving towards a 1984 type scenario...

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Good advice everyone should heed!

Reply
  about 7 years ago

I only recently realised that you could browse in private! I think your point about privacy I think I only really understand such a small amount of what the internet is capable of so now opt for privacy whenever I browse. Thanks Rodders

Reply
  about 9 years ago

Thanks Rodders. It can be a very small world out there.

Reply
  about 9 years ago

Hey Rodders, You just gave me the creeps. I didnt know it was this bad. Am scared of checking my email.

Reply
  about 9 years ago

Ya, I know. there were a few incidents in recent years where people email privacy has been invaded by various corporations. People tend to glaze over the privacy issues of the situation because they just want to know what the content of the emails were. We're definitely moving in the way of 1984 type stuff.

Reply
  about 9 years ago

thank you for the heads up. You have saved me from my own ignorance.

  
  about 9 years ago
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