There has been a lot of talk about “digital privacy” recently. Most people understand that it’s important, but still have had a tendency to push it off – like making sure you’re up to date on your insurance or getting around to cleaning out that junk drawer. Well, as July 4th approaches, I’ll give you a darn good reason to get around it… it’s your duty as a Patriotic American!
The NSA is ignoring the digital privacy rights of conservatives like Gavin Newsome ignores his own lock-down orders. If you haven’t read my post, How the Intelligence Community Plans to Wage a War Against the Cultural Right, you should check it out. Or just ask Tucker Carlson… he caught the NSA illegally reading his emails red-handed. (you can read that story on Breitbart here.) Besides, every time you use Google’s search engine, send email with Gmail, access the internet with Chrome or use an unsecured text messaging platform, you are feeding the Big Tech companies “data,” which is how they make money. (…take it easy Apple fans, they much better than Google.)
Even if you’re part of the “I have nothing to hide” crowd, and don’t have an issue, per se, with all these companies reading your private conversations, consider this: You’re financing them by supplying them with an endless (and free) stream of the fuel they use to build Artificial Intelligence, increasingly sophisticated algorithmic products (much of which is used by the government to track you) and any number of other “products” they come up with.
There is no free lunch. How much are you paying per month to use Google and Facebook? Nothing! They’re “free,” right? Ah hem…Like Bernie Sanders wants “free” college and “free” healthcare? Remember:
Big Tech companies are a key part of the Radical Axis (the partnership between the Democrat Party, Big Tech firms, Deep State bureaucrats and the Mainstream Media), which is waging a war against the Cultural Right. Data is the fuel Big Tech uses to make money – by continuing to share your data with them, you are literally funding the enemy!
Fortunately, there are ways to fight back – and most of them are incredibly simple and totally free. I’ll walk you through 5 things you can do right now, without spending a penny. For those of you that aren’t very tech savvy, don’t worry – this stuff is very simple and I provide video tutorials to walk you through. Oh and by the way, the tips below will also help prevent identity theft and other types of Cyber fraud. So let’s dive right in.
1.) Start using Encrypted Email – I recommend ProtonMail
You can get ProtonMail here
ProtonMail is the gold standard in Encrypted email – it’s safe, reliable, easy to use and has just been updated with some cool new features… and of course it’s free (like everything else I recommend here). This is a no-brainier. Here’s a quick 45 second video introduction… you’ll notice it look and feels a lot like Gmail – except the part where is it logs all sorts of data about you, loads that data into custom built software to develop a profile of your strengths, weaknesses and fears and then sells that profile to the highest bigger (unless the government wants it – they get it for free in exchange for not breaking up Google’s monopoly).
2.) Stop using Google’s search Engine – I recommend DuckDuckGo or Qwant instead
There are dozens of search engines to choose from but only a few that actually respect your privacy. DuckDuckGo (or DDG for short) is the old standard here. Qwant is a relative new-comer but seems to pretty well regarded among digital privacy enthusiasts. Every internet browser out there offers integration with DDG, so you can make it your “default search engine” if you dive into your browser’s settings. Firefox offers integration with both DDG and Qwant (take a guess what internet browser I’m going to recommend you download in #3 below?)
3.) Stop Using a Chrome as your Browser – Switch to Firefox instead
Chrome is a Google product. Don’t get me wrong – it works really well, but it essentially spies on you and reports all sorts of data about you back to Google. Firefox on the other hand is owned by the Mozilla organization, a non-profit that has supported internet privacy causes for many years. Firefox works just as well as Chrome, if not better, and they make it SUPER easy to switch over. You can automatically import all of your bookmarks and even your passwords saved in Chrome – allowing you to basically pick up where you left off immediately after downloading it. Seriously, it can’t get any easier than that. Firefox is available on for every operating system (yes, including Linux) as well as mobile platforms like Android and Apple, so use it on your phone also. When you download it, it will ask you “Do you want to make Firefox your default browser?” –> Answer “Yes”. I embedded some helpful videos below.
You can download Firefox here.
4.) Start Using an Encrypted Text Platform – I recommend either Telegram or Signal
Your text messages are probably the least private part of your digital life. The contents of those messages are being tracked by the manufacturer of your phone (Samsung, Google, Apple), the cell service carrier (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile), and whoever designed the default text message app that you probably using.
Both Signal and Telegram will offer you end-to-end encrypted text messages (at least when messaging recipients with the same platform). Also, you can text via wifi, so you don’t burn up your data plan. My favorite feature is that you can text from your computer or laptop, as both platforms offer a desktop app. (You can also text from a tablet via the mobile app as long as you’re connected to wifi) Telegram offers more features than Signal, but will only work when texting other people with Telegram. Signal on the other hand, is a little less customizable, BUT you can use it as your default text messaging platform and text anyone – even if they don’t have Signal. However, if you text someone who does not have Signal, that text message will not be encrypted… still, unencrypted texts from Signal are more private than using the default app that came with your phone (which routes all your data right back to either Google or Apple). Also, when you download either Telegram or Signal, it will check your contacts to see if anyone else you know is already on the platform… you may be surprised how many people already have it. As usual, I’ve embedded some helpful videos below.
5.) Adjust your Device Settings
This might make you feel kind of silly, but a huge amount of the data you’re sharing is because you are expressly “allowing” that data to be shared as per your current phone settings. Just shut those settings off! Device manufactures bury these setting deep in menus and make them intentionally difficult to find, but I embedded some videos below to help guide you. Next time you’re playing with your phone on the toilet, get off Instagram for a minute, and dive into your device’s settings menu. You’ll be amazed what you find.
There are lots more things you can do to up your digital privacy game and help DEFUND BIG TECH (a VPN is probably the best example), but those things are beyond the scope of this blog entry. Remember, even if you have the “hey, I have nothing to hide” mindset, you still have a patriotic duty to STOP FUNDING Big Tech by providing them with free data.
Considering the amount of sacrifice that our military service members and their families make everyday, you should certainly be able to make this relatively easy sacrifice for the greater good – It costs NOTHING, just 15 or 20 minutes of your time, you’ll likely have more features available to you than you did before (can you text from your tablet or laptop right now?) and you will be safer from identify theft.
Grab someone under 40 to help if you have to… just do what needs to be done.
Below is a quick (17 minute) documentary on why digital privacy is important. It doesn’t even really touch on the political aspect, it focuses more on individual privacy. It features some clips from Glen Greenwald’s enlightening TedTalk, which I highly recommend you make the time to watch at some point (despite the fact that it’s 6 years old already – it’s still just as relevant!) I embedded that TedTalk in it’s entirety, at the bottom of the page.