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privacy under threat


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#1 pcusr

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 07:20 AM

Ok.  I am hoping to get some step by step practical how-to help with this.

 

I want privacy.  I think IT IS IRONIC THAT IN THIS TIME OF SUPPOSED INCREASED DANGER FROM CRIMS ONLINE WE'RE BEING ASKED TO GIVE MORE INFO TO PROVIDERS INSTEAD OF LESS.  There is no way in hell google or microsoft or yahoo or whoever are getting my phone number.

 

This evening I installed a new little thing that was advertised on infopackets called surf anonymous free.  It integrates into Firefox, opera and I think IE, though I never use IE.  Chrome is not mentioned.

 

So a few problems with this.  Please note that I am an intermediate level autodidact. Willing to take any advice that is given in a way that is respectful of the dignity of the recipient.

 

1. Can't sign on to msn or yahoo messengers.  No reason is given. Defaults to US English. Try to change to UK English and it tells me 'troubles downloading UK files'.

 

2. Chrome is crippled. Chrome uses the same internet connection settings as IE which are also accessible thru the control panel 'internet options' in there, all is as it should be for the IP the app has allocated. So no reason I can see for chrome not to work.  Open up chrome settings and find that it's geobubbled me to the country of my native IP. That is indicated by the fact that in the search engine management options it stubbornly keeps changing back to the country of native IP and wouldn't allow setting for google search to be changed to any other, notably the generic US one. So changed default search engine to duckduckgo, which doesn't bubble or track, and now I can access duckduckgo after a few reloads, after a few 'unknown error' no go pages.  And can access no other site whatsoever by address directly.

 

3. Firefox.  I also use, for privacy, the following extensions; better privacy set to auto delete flash cookies, noscript, anonymox, flashblock, ghostery. Signed on to hotmail and yahoo to try to fix sign-in probs with msn and yahoo messengers.  Signed in ok. But, signing out, yahoo defaulted back to the geobubbled site of my native IP!!!

How the hell are they ascertaining my location???

 

4. After installing 'surf anonymous free', on accessing email in MS office outlook, there is an error message on the hotmail pop account telling me the account has been disabled.  This indicates to me that they liked being able to ID me with my IP and that they don't like the new IP.  With this app the IP is different each time you reboot the machine.  So even if I could change the settings for outlook, which I can't, I'd have to change them each time.

 

Ok so someone who reads this who knows a lot more than I do might say 'go and ask 'surfanonymousfree', and yes I could do that if they provided an email address to do so.  I'm going to uninstall it, but I do want some similar facility.  I do want to mask my IP and location when online.  I resent being geobubbled and I resent being ID'd in ways I don't know about and are not informed of, when I try to access my email.  I resent the surveillance, resent the tracking that is being done. 

 

I am willing to accept responsibility if I haven't taken adequate precautions and someone gets into my email account.  I'm not giving anyone my phone number, real name etc. etc.  The advice we used to get for protecting our online security was 'don't give real information' and I'm sticking to that, despite yahoo, microsoft, google and whoever else trying to coerce me. 

With gmail, you can't now get a new account without a phone number.  I don't know about the others. 

Logging in, with gmail I use extension 'remove this permanently' to get rid of that nag screen. With hotmail, the form 'a password isn't enough' looks as if nothing's possible except to fill the form fields with the phone number they ask for.  It's not immediately apparent you can 'save and continue' with an empty field. 

Yahoo gives two options, to fill the phone number field or 'remind me later'.  There's no 'F-off and stop bugging me with this' option.

 

I have told a dear friend of mine about the outrageous amount of personal info that is gathered and the outrageously covert manner in which this is done.  She's in facebook, which I am not, and despite having been a Jewish war baby who was hidden in a cellar for years by a heroic family, her answer to me is 'well I don't mind how much they surveil me; I've got nothing to hide'! Incredible how complacent and stupid we are getting.  All this supposedly so that the internets can pay for itself with targeted advertising, and for OUR supposed security.  Not a good enough reason to invade my privacy and trample on my civil liberties! 

 

So can anyone help me sort this out?  If anyone doesn't agree with my wish for privacy, don't bother saying so. It's all been said before.


Edited by pcusr, 26 March 2013 - 07:22 AM.


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#2 pcusr

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 12:44 AM

NO replies to this!  amazing.  It appears nobody knows more than me about this.

 

well in answer to my question "How the hell are they ascertaining my location???"  as a mid to lay person a tentative answer might be 'evercookies', referrer info and a non-spoofed useragent.  

 

Basically, we use the ignorant as sacrificial lambs.  the more people there are who are clueless and parasitised, enduring to browse through quagmires of targeted ads and geobubbled pap, the less likely commercial interests will be motivated to develop ever more perfidious ways to surveil us. So we never help people out who seek better privacy, because it's in our interests to keep the environment unimmune.

 

So much like ecology it's incredible



#3 Platypus

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 04:39 AM

I'm not really surprised that there hasn't been any response - I think most helpers here would be aware that anonymity on the internet is an illusion and consequently not have worried much about trying anonymizers. Least of all to be familiar with the particular one you mention.

 

In the context of who you do not wish to have access to your information, have you considered that by using an anonymizer service, you have given some unknown random operator continuous access to your entire packet stream? I'll admit I've never been able to reconcile why someone in the name of giving out less information to known entities, would hand off to an unknown party this privilege previously only exercised by their ISP or a law enforcement agency.


Edited by Platypus, 02 April 2013 - 04:41 AM.

Top 5 things that never get done:

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#4 pcusr

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 08:21 PM

The item i asked about is history. 

 

There was also the question of how the geolocation was being acheived despite the measures I've taken to avoid that.  Evidently that was too hard a question. 

 

As to the general hopelessness of any attempt to avoid being 'bubbled' or 'targeted' for ads etc because of the illusory nature of privacy on the net, we'll have to prioritise won't we?  If every thing I do is being surveilled, I'd rather filter out the surveillance to that by only entities that can surveill proxies, and not every damned website that tries to control my 'experience'.

 

So i understand; you are so entirely helpless to guard your privacy that you don't even try to.  That you maintain a voluntary and complete state of ignorance about how to safeguard your privacy.  That you're happy to accept the targeted advertising, have the information you can access be limited according to your location etc etc. 

 

I have to say that you don't inspire much confidence in the expertise of helpers here.  This is an issue that is not going to go away, and i for one am not going to collaborate roll over and collaborate.  I advise you to do similarly, because this strikes to the heart of every notion of 'democracy' [perhaps you think democracy's an illusion too, and care as little about it as you do about your privacy].  Where is equality when every person's internet is being controlled by government and/or commnercial interests who tailor it to their income, for example?

 

People who know even less than the small amount i do could use help in finding and using whatever tools exist on the net to control their internet 'experience'.  Declining to equip yourself to be able to provide that is a political act in itself that fails to support of uphold people's right to such control or to their privacy.  If we're not careful, people will forget that they have any rights at all. 



#5 pcusr

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 09:19 PM

btw.  we should not be handing over the privelege of continuous access to our entire packet stream to law enforcement agencies.  In case it's not widely understood, they don't yet have that legal right, though I'm sure they're working on getting it. 

 

 But my main point is that NEITHER should we be at the mercy of whatever entities get the info they want about us COVERTLY.  There are some people who prefer information to regulation.  That means they'd rather accept the risk suffering from internet skullduggery while retaining as freedom and control as poss over their internet destinies.  To that end, they recognise the need for information so that they can protect themselves.

Others unwittingly trade off their autonomy for the coloured beads of pretty apps and the illusion of security from those who might not be entirely to be trusted. I understate things just a little.

 

There is a war going on in the interests of, and using, the forces of light and darkness right now over control of the net.  That's occurring beyond this little pond and it might seem futile to discuss/argue about it here.  Would really prefer to read a book or plant something.  But the silence on this site about this is deafening. It bespeaks fear and that's 9/10ths of the battle won by the surveillers.

 

I am scared to death of only being permitted, for example, to read the news that's deemed suitable or profitable [for others] for me to read while the rest of the world storms on invisibly as if in a parallel dimension.

 

If anyone out there knows a way to explain to a semi-ignoramus how these sites are ascertaining people's real locations, that would still be much appreciated.


Edited by pcusr, 14 April 2013 - 09:20 PM.


#6 jburd1800

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 10:06 PM

Whomever, can only use the information thats given to them. I have both yahoo and and gmail accounts and have never given a phone #. Both work fine. If you want to be anonymous while using the internet, don't use it. It doesn't exist.


Edited by jburd1800, 14 April 2013 - 10:49 PM.

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