“Human beings are born with different capacities. If they are free, they are not equal. And if they are equal, they are not free.”
― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Privacy

I've noticed a recurring theme, prompted by the GOP's recent decision to let your ISP sell your browsing history without your permission, that Google/Facebook/Twitter already sell your information so letting your Internet Service Provider do the same is no big deal.

First of all, if you have a Facebook account, you probably don't care about privacy and can skip the rest of this post. There is a difference, however, between Google/Facebook et. al. selling your info and letting your ISP do it. More here.

The difference is that you can choose not to use Google or Bing. You can use Duck-Duck-Go for search. You can choose not to be on Facebook or Twitter. If you want to trade information for “free” stuff you can decide to do that, though most people still have no clue what that means.

With your ISP you are captive, and you are paying them. If they want to use your info they should have to get permission. And then they should pay you.

Nice thing about a Virtual Private Network (VPN), it can encrypt the data your ISP sees – making it unsaleable – while obscuring your IP address from the likes of Google. If you go this route make sure the VPN supplier doesn't sell your data.

Possibly useful analogy (using islands and bridges/boats) about how VPNs work here.

See also:
The Best Browser Extensions that Protect Your Privacy

Slightly dated, but informative.

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