The web is like the ocean, full of beauty and danger. Just as surfers exercise caution through techniques such as using surf wax on their boards and surfing in safer waters, you can exercise web safety through private domain registration, security software, and anonymous web browsers. Below are 3 tips for accomplishing these tasks:
- Tip #1: Hide your domain contact information. Anyone can look up the owner of a domain name by simply typing “whois” and the domain name (website address). Therefore, when you or a member of your family register for or update a domain, use a personal mailbox address and a work or virtual phone number rather than your home address and phone number. To completely hide all personal contact information, select the private registration option for a small fee.
- Tip #2: Surf in protected waters. By installing anti-virus software, a firewall, and anti-spyware software on all family computers, your surfing expeditions become more secure because these programs help detect, prevent, disarm and/or remove malicious software. Think of them as enabling you to surf in waters that are well-guarded and free of sharks and other predators.
- Tip #3: Surf invisibly. An anonymous web browser lets a person surf without leaving a trail of data about the browser, computer system, IP address and more. Better yet, any one in your family can use a free anonymous proxy sites, such as Kproxy.com, that retrieves web pages for you. For a fee, you can purchase a commercial service (such as Anonymizer.com) that offers additional security by encrypting the user’s email, Internet messaging and other traffic.
If you’d like to find where your personal information might be floating out there in the vast, wide web, consider purchasing a service like ReputationDefender (Reputationdefender.com) that lets you track, delete, and monitor your personal data on the Internet. ReputationDefender also has a family plan that protects your personal information, and lets you monitor your children’s privacy and references on the web.
Surf’s up! Writing PIs