How To Guarantee Email And Web Privacy
Ultimately, it is your responsibility to safeguard your data, your identity, and your computing devices. When you send an email, should you include your medical records? The next time you browse the Internet, is your transmission secure? Just a few simple precautions may save you problems later. In this article, I want to look at how you can guarantee email and web privacy. Follow me as we look at this together in this article.
This figure shows two businessmen with computer laptop send email data with protection shield and key decryption.
Email and Web Browser Privacy
Every day, millions of email messages are used to communicate with friends and conduct business. Email is a convenient way to communicate with each other quickly. When you send an email, it is similar to sending a message using a postcard.
The postcard message is transmitted in plain sight of anyone who has access to look, and the email message is transmitted in plain text and is readable by anyone who has access. These communications are also passed among different servers while in route to the destination. Even when you erase your email messages, the messages can be archived on the mail servers for some time.
Anyone with physical access to your computer, or your router, can view which websites you have visited using web browser history, cache, and possibly log files. This problem can be minimized by enabling the in-private browsing mode on the web browser. Most of the popular web browsers have there own name for private browser mode:
- Microsoft Internet Explorer: InPrivate
- Google Chrome: Incognito
- Mozilla Firefox: Private tab / private window
- Safari: Private: Private browsing
With private mode enabled, cookies are disabled, and temporary Internet files and browsing history are removed after closing the window or program.
Keeping your Internet browsing history private may prevent others from gathering information about your online activities and enticing you to buy something with targeted ads. Even with private browsing enabled and cookies disabled, companies are developing different ways of fingerprinting users in order to gather information and track user behaviour. For example, the intermediary devices, such as routers, can have information about a user’s web surfing history.
Ultimately, it is your responsibility to safeguard your data, your identity, and your computing devices. When you send an email, should you include your medical records? The next time you browse the Internet, is your transmission secure? Just a few simple precautions may save you problems later.
A firewall is a wall or partition that is designed to prevent a fire from spreading from one part of a building to another. In computer networking, a firewall is designed to control, or filter, which communications are allowed in and which are allowed out of a device or network, as shown in the figure.
A firewall can be installed on a single computer with the purpose of protecting that one computer (host-based firewall), or it can be a stand-alone network device that protects an entire network of computers and all of the host devices on that network (network-based firewall).
Over the years, as computer and network attacks have become more sophisticated, new types of firewalls have been developed which serve different purposes in protecting a network. Here is a list of common firewall types:
- Network Layer Firewall– filtering based on source and destination IP addresses
- Transport Layer Firewall–filtering based on source and destination data ports, and filtering based on connection states
- Application Layer Firewall–filtering based on application, program or service
- Context-Aware Application Firewall– filtering based on the user, device, role, application type, and threat profile
- Proxy Server– filtering of web content requests like URL, domain, media, etc.
- Reverse Proxy Server– placed in front of web servers, reverse proxy servers protect, hide, offload, and distribute access to web servers
- Network Address Translation (NAT) Firewall– hides or masquerades the private addresses of network hosts
- Host-based Firewall– filtering of ports and system service calls on a single computer operating system
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