Privacy & Security Guide (2022)

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We are using computers and smartphones nearly everyday. This means that we have a lot of our data for the taking for the companies like Google, hackers to monetize or in the worst case our goverment to spy on us. To avoid this, there are a few things which you can do.

  1. Password Manager – 1Password / Bitwarden.
    1. The most risky thing you can is using just one or two passwords for all of their internet accounts. Password managers help you to avoid doing that, create secure passwords for you, and monitor dark web so you are somewhat secure if your password will be leaked.
    2. 1Password has probably the best UI/UX on the market, and from what I see using reguraly password manager is the biggest challenge.
    3. Bitwarden is open source option, and gives you option do self-host your data.
    4. If you don’t know what to choose go for 1Password for higher adoption chance for you and your family, if a privacy & security is your utmost concern go with Bitwarden.
  2. Email – Enabling 2FA
    1. Nobody wants somebody gaining access to your emails, all the data, and possibilties to reset your password and gain control over your accounts.
    2. To have additional line of defence enable adding additional factor when you log in from the new device. 2FA – or two factor authentication means, that applications will require adding short code from your smartphone which will be send through text (less secure) or through specialised mobile app like Authy.
    3. By deafult I’m assuming you are using Gmail, there is a guide how to do it.
  3. DNS – NextDNS.
    1. Imagine that there is a one service which your device asks every time when you open a new website. This service is called DNS, and they can log information about you and share it with 3rd parties.
    2. Changing it to something which you control through NextDNS is painless, and they are providing apps which will do the setup for you.
    3. Cool thing is that it often increase speed of your internet usage.
    4. Remember about adding adblock filters, and setting up the logs in the Switzerland.
  4. Backups Basic – Time Machine.
    1. Avoid doomsday scenario of loosing your computer, or having your data held hostage.
    2. Use Time Machine feature on MacOS with external hard drive via USB 3.
    3. MacOS will remind you if you don’t do backups for longer period of time
  5. Search engine – Google with changed privacy settings.
    1. Unparallel quality of the service, but you pay through your data. However, you can minimalise the amount of data Google have about you thanks to the European Union.
    2. There are plenty of settings you can change like AdSettings to make your account more private.
  6. Web browser – Safari / Firefox.
    1. Say no to Google Chrome, which is becoming less and less user friendly.
    2. Safari for MacOS giver more battery time, and have some basic privacy & security build in features.
    3. Firefox, which takes user privacy as their priority and are managed by foundation, for anything else.

[Work in Progress] You want to go more into the rabbit hole? Of course this is something you can do, but from my experiance you will be in the less than 0,01% of the Internet users.

  1. Backups Advanced (3-2-1 rule explained)
    1. Local TimeMachine done daily on external HDD connected to my wireless network.
    2. Local TimeMachine done weekly by external SSD.
    3. Stored online (pCloud has 2 TB for €350 lifetime deal, it’s a compromise price/privacy solution) fully bootable backup (encripted .dmg file) done by SuperDuper!I have problems with pCloud App, so to mount the disk I use CloudMonter
      1. To increase the security & privacy of the backup you can buy pCloud Crypto, which gives another layer of the security.
  2. Search engine – DuckDuckGo
  3. VPN –
    1. I see ~20% drop in internet speed.
    2. Reddit community favorite.
    3. Guide how to combine NextDNS and Mullvad.
  4. Web browser – Firefox with Add-ons
  5. Hardware MFA – Yubico
  6. [WiP]

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