In a world where the internet pervades every aspect of most people’s lives, it sometimes may seem impossible to achieve any privacy at all. This may look like the case, but thankfully it’s far from the truth. Whether you want just a bit of anonymous while using the web or you’re looking for a complete overhaul in terms of removing every trace of yourself, here are four ways to start.
Use a Junk Email
Everything comes through email these days. You can get free offers, discounts, updates on new releases or sales, and any number of other bonuses. All you have to do is enter your email. However, all these offers and updates can overcrowd your inbox, and you don’t always know what they are going to use your email for. You don’t want junk mail coming to the same email that you use for your bank account or work. Instead of using your main email, set up a side account that you can give out to websites and other email collections.
Use Privacy Settings on Social Media
This may seem obvious, but it is important. The strictness of your privacy settings will depend on what you want, but most social media allows you to keep things pretty private. While not popular, all social media can be regulated, even Twitter. If you are posting information about when you won’t be home, your young children, or other information that you may want to keep private, look into restricting who can see that information. You can also restrict who can send your direct messages so you are less likely to be hit by a virus or scam.
Disconnect Your Phone
Any app that your phone uses is probably linked to your phone number. But what happens when you change your phone number? These apps aren’t automatically unlinked and that can cause a real problem. Apps like Venmo, which has your personal bank account and sometimes your credit cards linked, will send a code to the phone number that is synced that allows someone to reset the password. If you forget to change your number, you may have just handed someone all your personal financial information. If you have to get a new number for any reason, make sure you check all your apps that were connected to your phone.
Be Careful What Information You Give Out
When it comes down to it, you don’t have to give out any information that you don’t want to. Use your good judgment about what information you give to various websites. Check to make sure the website is legitimate, especially if you are entering financial information. If it isn’t required, you may want to consider not submitting information until you get to know the website better.
If you want to see what is out there about you, consider using a website like CheckPeople.com to see what is out there about you. There are some things that you can’t keep private, but seeing a report on your information allows you to see what you need to do to preserve your privacy.