The time to talk about privacy and security on the internet couldn’t be more appropriate than now. The online space has become more unsafe in recent time. The web users’ fear over digital privacy invasion has risen.
It became more intense after the indictment of major tech companies. Especially those that were over illegal data capture and mining. The Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal is still fresh in people’s minds. Tens of thousands of individuals’ data were illegally accessed. Many more may still be mined for big advertising and political consulting firms.
So, how do you protect yourself from falling victim to hacks and data breaches? You can become less vulnerable to personal data abusers through privacy protection on your phone. Your mobile phones contain incredible amounts of personal information. This includes banking details, emails, contacts, text messages, and more.
You are going to learn about some of the best security and privacy apps for Android out there. Along with how they can help you protect your data from illegal access.
These privacy apps will help you keep your data safe. They’ll also hide your web footprints so unauthorized people can’t track your location. They also won’t be able to watch your activities in cyberspace.
Signal Private Messenger
The development of messaging apps is one of the amazing innovations in tech in this digital age. These apps enable you to connect with family, friends, and colleagues. But are you aware that most messaging apps like WhatsApp keep the metadata of their users?
Metadata contains lists of members plus their information such as icons and names. This is an example of data that can be tracked by the messaging app. This type of practice compromises your data.
Do you need a messaging app that respects your privacy? If so, consider Signal Private Messenger. This app was developed by Open Whisper Systems.
How is it any different from others?
Signal Private Messenger is a privacy-focused app. It’s built with open-source and end-to-end encryption for all messages. Being an open-source app makes it easy for anyone to verify its security by auditing the code.
Signal Private Messenger also keeps your information safe by not storing your logs. It doesn’t keep the metadata of its users.
PEZO is a lovely privacy app every parent needs to download on their smartphone and their kid’s. PEZO gives parents the ability to block apps and games on their children’s device.
They can do this through an educational blocking tool that incentivizes educational development. First, the child has to answer the assigned number of educational challenges correctly. After doing so, PEZO rewards them by unlocking their device’s recreational features.
As a parent, you can make learning more fun for your kid with Pezo app. It helps you introduce responsibility over their screen time. Start by downloading PEZO Parent on your device and the accompanying PEZO app on your child’s device. After doing this, you’ll be able to manage their educational screen time. PEZO allows you to customize the number of educational challenges your child must complete to unlock their device. This is due to their unique blocking feature.
Search engines are a big blessing to the world. They have decentralized access to knowledge. Google, Bing and Yahoo are popular today because of the value they add to their users. But they have their downsides too. Signing up for Google, for instance, means giving up your privacy to them.
Google stores your data and monitors your web footprints. These include your location, the sites you visit, the web pages you open and all your activities. They make your data available to advertising and marketing agencies. These guys use your information for online ads to target you with their offers.
With DuckDuckGo, you will have privacy protection from the third party. DuckDuckGo doesn’t store your data. It also scrubs any of your personal information that a website or app may store. The search engine has a protection feature as well. This prevents advertising companies from tracking your online activities. It empowers you to track those that are tracking you.
Do you believe that Virtual Private Networks are only used for illegal activities? You’re going to change your mind today. VPNs are useful tools that can give you the level of privacy you seek while browsing online.
VPNs encrypt all the traffic flowing to and from your device. It then routes it through an intermediary server outside your current location. It prevents you from being tracked by hiding your digital footprint. With a VPN connected to your Android device, hackers and data-hunting agencies won’t be able to spy on your activity. They also won’t be able to capture your data.
Most VPNs are free, except if you wish to upgrade to premium. There are many online but ExpressVPN is considered to be one of the best and most reliable.
ExpressVPN has become more popular among privacy-enthusiasts web users. This is because it uses military-grade encryption protocols. It also has robust speeds and a vast server network.
ExpressVPN is designed to give the most app privacy. It doesn’t joke around with your security. That’s why it offers amazing features such as DNS leak protection and IPv6 leak protection. It also offers split tunneling and a built-in kill switch. These features are all referred to as Network Lock. Kill Switches hinder traffic from entering and leaving your device if your connection drops. This feature offers a greater level of protection. This is especially the case if you’re connected to an unsecured public Wi-Fi network.
Another amazing feature of ExpressVPN is that it’s good for torrenting. It allows you to stream or download from any of its servers. You can do this anywhere on earth with the IP address hidden from prying eyes.
Emails are an important part of our everyday life. You connect and interact with friends, colleagues, and business partners over emails. All these emails are exchanged across the web. And they’re susceptible to hacking.
How can you ensure your emails are safe?
ProtonMail has you covered. ProtonMail provides secure email services to keep your emails from prying eyes. It’s an end-to-end encrypted email service. It was founded in 2014 at CERN. It uses technology that provides two levels of encryption. First, it encrypts the account of the user. Next, it enciphers the mailbox itself.
ProtonMail generates unique keys for every account. These keys don’t have built-in backdoors. This makes it impossible even for the government to access any of the accounts. Its unique features are further proof of the company’s focus on privacy.
You don’t have to provide any of your personal information to create an account with them. The company doesn’t keep records of IP addresses or personal information that can link the account to individual users.
Firefox Focus is a dedicated privacy browser. It comes with tracking protection and content blocking. With Firefox Focus, you can do a lot of amazing things. The browser blocks known website trackers by category. It does this by enabling you to customize the level of content blocking. You can also customize your tracking protection.
The first step is downloading the app on your Android device.
Then, launch the app.
Tap the setting gear at the top right corner. This takes you to the setting page. There, you can tap the switch next to the option that you want. The options include:
- Block ad trackers
- Block analytics trackers
- Block social trackers
Firefox Focus doesn’t store your data. When you’re done with a page, tap the floating trash can icon in the corner of the screen. The record is erased forever, leaving no trail behind.
Additionally, Firefox Focus performs well. The app works by preventing some parts of web pages from loading. This makes your web pages load faster. This can also reduce your mobile data usage.
Android users can use Firefox Focus as a standalone browser. Other operating systems, like iPhone’s can use it as a content blocker for Safari. Firefox Focus is available in the Google Play Store and App Store for free.
You will always have to add your phone number to complete a registration or fill out a form online. Do you not want certain people to know your real number? Are you finding it difficult to block unwanted calls or text messages? Hushed can be of great help here.
With Hushed, you can create a burner (temporary) while you hide your real number. This makes it possible for you to enjoy complete anonymity. Especially for texting, calling, voicemails, and auto-replies. You can give your burner number next time you need to give your number to a sales rep or when filling out a form online.
Hushed also allows you to create alternative caller IDs. You can manage several lines for personal or business purposes. This can even be done without having to use two or more phones.
Norton Security And Antivirus
Your data is at risk if there’s malware on your smartphone. Malwares can lock you out of your device in the future. That doesn’t have to happen as long as you take precautions.
Norton is designed as an app security solution. It conducts a routine scanning on your Android device. It does this to ensure that your device is safe from destructive malware and spyware. With Norton, you can brag about having secure apps on your mobile phone. Additionally, it helps you to block unwanted calls and text messages. You can also lock your phone from anywhere.
Norton Security has a feature that allows you to locate your phone on a map if it’s lost or stolen. You can download your Norton Security and Antivirus on Google Play Score for free.
Solid Explorer File Manager
Solid Explorer File Manager is another security and privacy app you should consider. It is an Android file manager. It enables you to browse and operate the files on your smartphone’s local storage. You can do this on a variety of third-party cloud storage facilities as well. Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive, and Google Drive are all examples of third-party cloud storage. If you have any file or folder you want to encrypt, open the app. Then, highlight the item. Next, select “Encrypt” from the main menu.
Once you’ve done that, type in your password. You can even activate fingerprint authentication if you want. This encrypts your file within a few seconds. You can only view the encrypted folder after you’ve entered your credentials.
You have to decrypt the folder in Solid Explorer before you can have access to it. In fact, not even system-level services like the Android Download app will be able to open the file. It’s an amazing app security technology.
Authy 2-Factor Authentication
Yes, it’s good to consider strong passwords as part of the measures to ensure your privacy online. Strong passwords don’t completely guarantee privacy protection. Most times, you tend to use the same password across different online platforms. The reason for that is understandable. Using the same passwords across different platforms saves time. You don’t have to go through the stress of creating new ones whenever you want to sign up on a new app or site.
But, this practice can make you lose your data to hackers. Once an account is compromised, others become vulnerable too. This is why you need Authy Two-factor authentication. Authy is a one of the best security apps to protect you against hacks. Not all sites or apps support its use. But, it’s advisable to activate it if you’re signing up for a site that supports it as part of its security measures.
Go to Google Play Store to download Authy and install it. Create an account. Once that’s done, the app begins to generate one code per session. You then use the code with your primary password. This service makes it much more difficult for a modern-day hacker to get into your account.
Authy isn’t the only platform where you can manage Two-factor authentication. Google Two-factor authentication is another nice security app, but, Authy is more effective. It has advanced features that support app-level fingerprint protection. You can also set it up to function on several devices.
Orbot is a world-class privacy app that works on Android devices. The app was developed by the Guardian Projects. They did this with a mission to enable Android devices to have access to the Tor Network. Tor is a free and open-source program for enabling anonymous communication. The name was derived from the original software project named “The Onion Router”.
Orbot is a secure app that works better when you use it with its companion app, the Orfox browser. It allows you to browse the internet without being tracked. You don’t have to worry about sites tracking your location. This is because your connection is completely encrypted. It’s also enrooted via several intermediary servers outside your current location.
Orbot is available for free on Google Play Store.
In today’s world, data is everything. Data has become a symbol of power and tool of control. Companies are doing everything, legally and illegally to get as much data as they can about users. Some get the data so they can harass you with their products or services. Others do it to steal from you.
You have a right to privacy but it doesn’t look like these guys are going to stop mining data anytime soon. So, you need to find a way to only give them access to what you are comfortable releasing to the public space. This is why you need trusted security and privacy apps to secure your data and keep prying eyes away.
Privacy apps can only do so much. You need to be mindful of the information you put out there. Don’t enter your credit card details and private information on unsecured websites.
Stop jumping at every freebie offer. Many of them are designed to steal your information. Secure your accounts with strong password combinations. Use alphanumeric passwords. LastPass Password Manager can help you secure your passwords.