12 Months in Retrospect
2018 this gotta staaahp!
Fighting the urge of posting yet another facebook post reading “2018, this gotta staaahp!” as I reminisce this year in all its glory is something I can definitely shake. Or can I? Looking back at 2018, as cliche as it may be if you do that in late December, means you too have been sucked by the new year’s resolutions current. So try not to fight it as it swallows you whole, after all, making resolutions kind of makes sense.
Starting with Facebook scandal in April and following with net neutrality repeal in May, 2018 was ringing alarm bells in online security and rightly so with a double sworded twist, both on the technology and law enforcement standpoints. Digital privacy concerns culminated however this summer, when both Russia and China decided to ban VPN services, thus preventing government censorship to be undermined by virtual private networks any longer or by other anonymous browsing tools.
In spite of the orwellian scenario, it’s not yet clear how the censorship ordeal will play out in 2019 and there are still a lot of VPN services that still work in China and Russia.
The EU Copyright Directive
The link tax, censorship machines and the so called posible balkanisation of the web, happening this fall at the request of the EU Copyright Directive raised a lot of concerns under three articles that seemed to have control of informational flow at stake. If passed in January of next year, in the current form, the bill might damage the way we use the internet and online freedom of expression in a major way.
Failing to redefine these articles, might lead to permanent surveillance, damaging the open and free internet as we know it with great implication on innovation, proving that sometimes the road to hell is indeed paved with good intentions.
Just as in the case of net neutrality repeal in the USA, these articles of the EU directive are seen as enemies of innovation. Advocates of net neutrality argue in the favor of keeping an unobstructed online field as a vital part of innovation. Their concern is very valid and should be a cause worth fighting for all of us.
New Year’s Security Resolutions in 2019
In the sharing, internet economy, data is the currency, an informational and economic asset capable of traveling the speed of light in a vacuum, when going through state of the art optical fibers. Able to operate at 99.7% the speed of light according to researchers at the University of Southampton in England. (source: Extreme Tech)
The digital world is now creating tangible value from big data so expect internet privacy to take an even more prominent route in the future.
Nowadays, security must come in layers, not only in the corporate environment, but on a personal level also.
Here are a few things you might want to consider for an overall improved security of your online privacy and data.
Get a VPN service for all your devices:
The number one thing you need to get in line with is having a VPN connection. It’s really simple to use and just like that poof! your data travels through an encrypted tunnel, safe from prying eyes and encrypted all the while. You basically need to pay a monthly subscription and rock on. It’s important that you don’t chose a free VPN as free VPN services are sure to get their profits elsewhere and it’s usually on your broadband expense. So avoid using unreliable free services that offer protection, but are in fact jeopardizing it.
Taking hold of your own digital footprint requires savvy, educated users, that know their rights and are not willing to compromise when it comes to their own privacy.
It’s easy to understand why more and more people resort to using a VPN service, rather than letting their information “fly” to unknown servers where they can be stored indefinitely.
Another simple step you can take to ensure your passwords are strong and that you have them all in order. Passwords managers are not written in stone, so naturally they can be hacked, but is far less likely to have your password hacked than it is to have one and the same password for multiple platforms and have your data compromised by relying on your memory alone.
We know it can be annoying to have an extra layer of access when you’re in a hurry, but remember you will not be prompted with a 2fact auth method if you don’t switch devices often.
Back up is the most obvious security measure that you can take, but people are often just not doing it. Regardless if you back up locally on a hard drive or in the cloud, you can do the extra mile and encrypt everything before backing up your data and you can be certain that your data is safe or that you can at least do a roll back to the most recent version previously saved.
Taking a few measures to securely navigate the valley of post-truth are of the essence in fearing no evil. Keeping our heads clear and taking action to protect the digital environment we expose ourselves to on a daily, without having to go to extreme lengths to do so, is the way to go in 2018.
Having a VPN in place is the smart approach to getting around all this. Think at a VPN as the middleman between you and the internet, where your ISP can only see a bunch of encrypted traffic. And since your VPN knows as much as your ISP would, it’s very important to choose a reliable one with a zero log policy and a strong encryption.
Services like MyIP.io will offer you a self-managed VPN platform, delivering fast, secure and reliable VPN service . This platform caters to a wide demographic through three channeled directions: Personal, Dedicated and Business, so it makes for a wonderful choice for corporate or personal use at the same time. Whatever provider you may chose, remember that the smart approach is to use a VPN service that you feel is the best match for you. Until then, stay smart, use a VPN!