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Take Control of Your Online Privacy, 2nd Edition

Book Description

Learn what's private online (not much)--and what to do about it!

Do you have anything to hide? Whether or not you think you do, your online activities are certainly tracked -- and not just by well-meaning sites who want to keep you logged in or by marketing firms who want to show you targeted ads for products that you likely want to buy.

In the ebook, Joe helps you understand what to expect about online privacy and develop a sensible online privacy strategy, customized for your needs. He then explains how to enhance the privacy of your Internet connection, Web browsing, email messages, online chatting, social media interactions, and file sharing, as well as your mobile phone or tablet, and Internet of Things devices like webcams and thermostats. To bring home the most important privacy no-nos, Joe also encourages you to take The Pledge (it's tongue-in-cheek, though it would have saved numerous politicians from ridicule). Plus, parents will find important reminders about protecting a child's privacy.

Teach This Book! Once you're satisfied with your own online privacy strategy, you may want to help friends or colleagues improve theirs. To that end, Take Control of Your Online Privacy includes links to a free one-page PDF cheat sheet and to a PDF-based slide deck that you can show on any computer or mobile device screen.

Whether you have a Mac or PC, iOS or Android device, set-top box, cell phone, or some other network-enabled gadget, you'll find the advice that ordinary people need to handle common privacy needs (secret agents should look elsewhere). You'll receive savvy advice about:

Why worry? Learn about who wants your private data, and why they want it. Even if you don't believe you have anything to hide, you almost certainly do, in the right context. Would you give just anyone your financial records or medical history? Didn't think so.

Set your privacy meter: Develop your own personal privacy rules -- everyone has different privacy buttons, and it's important to figure out which are important to you.

"Joe Kissell nails it. Take Control of Your Online Privacy is a comprehensive and practical guide to protecting your privacy in the digital age. Joe helps you make and implement the right privacy choices for your life."
--Rich Mogull, CEO of Securosis

Manage your Internet connection: Understand privacy risks, prevent snoops, and take key precautions to keep your data from leaking out.

Browse and search the Web: Learn what is revealed about you when you use the Web. Avoid bogus Web sites, connect securely where possible, control your cookies and history, block ads, browse and search anonymously, and find out who is tracking you. Also, learn how to protect passwords and credit card data.

Send and receive email: Find out how your email could be intercepted, consider when you want email to be extra private (such as when communicating with a doctor or lawyer), find out why Joe doesn't recommend email encryption as a solution to ordinary privacy needs (but find pointers for how to get started if you want to try it -- or just encrypt an attachment, which is easier), get tips for sending email anonymously, and read ideas for alternatives to email.

Talk and chat online: Consider to what extent any phone call, text message, or online chat is private and find tips for enhancing privacy when using these channels.

Watch your social media sharing: Social media is by definition social, so there's a limit to how private it can be. Understand the risks and benefits of sharing personal information online, tweak your settings, and consider common-sense precautions.

Other topics covered in the book include sharing files, checking your electronics, thinking mobile and ways to help your children.