After many scandals such as Equifax's data breach and the 2016 US election, cyber security has become an important problem for the Americans. Unfortunately, when we use our devices, we are open to a cyber attack ̵
1; especially when we surf the web. However, there are ways that we can make it harder for hackers and data winners.
The biggest security weakness in your smartphone is its data connection – unfortunately, all devices with always internet connection in themselves will pose a risk. Although there are no foolproof methods, using the following suggestions, you can better protect yourself against Russian hackers, big data or even a nosy spouse.
Step 1: Get a VPN
Perhaps the best way to improve your defense while browsing the web is to use a VPN. A VPN (or Virtual Private Network ) can offer two important security features: encryption and privacy.
With the correct VPN, all data is encrypted during transit. Think of it like this: instead of running your data in a regular car, it is now traveling in an armored car. It may be slower, but it will be much harder for someone to access it while traveling from your phone to any site you visit.
The other feature that a VPN provides is privacy. Your IP address corresponds to your home address. Just as the post office uses your mailing address to send letters, your IP address is used by your network to move data between your device and the internet. Without VPN it is easy for someone to get your IP address for a direct attack on your smartphone.
VPNs create a secure tunnel between your Android device and the server (or router) that provides the VPN service. This server acts as a buffer between you and the internet. Imagine every time you send a letter, you give it to the postman, who places the letter in another envelope that marks the sender as himself. Now, if someone comes across the letter, they would think it came from the postman and not you.
VPN works the same way. When sending data to the Internet, it goes through a secure server first before on the web, which marks the traffic as if it originated from the VPN server. Now if a package is intercepted by a malicious device, they will not have your IP address, but the VPN instead.
With the 2017 decision of the FCC to effectively stop Net Neutrality, privacy is more important than ever. Internet service providers (Internet service providers) again have control over all data that runs through their networks and can do what they consider appropriate.
As the story has shown, ISPs will regulate traffic based on the type of websites you visit or the services you use. With a VPN your ISP does not see which websites you visit – all it sees is an encrypted connection between you and your VPN. Therefore, your ISP cannot downgrade your Netflix movie quality or block your device from a particular service. It cannot effectively register your browsing history to sell to companies. If your ISP does not block VPN traffic (which is possible), it is one of the only ways to surf the web privately and freely.
There are many excellent VPN services in the Play Store, but my personal favorite is NordVPN, as it provides a great balance between security and speed. NordVPN uses the highest encryption method to protect your data and has over 2,400 servers in 56 countries, allowing it to maintain fast speeds while doing so.