If you watched the video that accompanies the NPR story Your Digital Trail, And How It Can Be Used Against You, then you may have asked yourself this question:
What can I do to avoid disclosing SO MUCH information about me when I’m online?
For a start, you can use these three tools:
I know, I know. “What do you mean, Google Chrome? I don’t want Google to know any more about me than they already do.” Fine. You can use the Firefox plugin instead. Or you could just browse from the Hide My Ass! webpage? Or you could go all out and use Tor.
You have plenty of options. The purpose of this blog post is to provide step-by-step guidelines for one of the simpler options available.
Still reading? Good. Here you go.
- Install Google Chrome
- Install the Hide My Ass! Web Proxy extension from the Google Chrome store
- Right-click on the HMA button in Chrome (yellow circle, black H) and click Options
- Apply the following settings to the HMA extension and click Save
- Proxy site & server location: HideMyAss.com / Random Server
- URL encryption: Encrypted
- SSL encryption: checked
- Launch proxy in incognito mode: checked
- Open websites in a new tab: checked
- Never use value of address bar: unchecked
- Context menu integration: checked
Now you’re all set.
To browse a website anonymously, just left-click on the Hide My Ass! icon in Chrome, type in the URL you want to visit, and click the Proxy! button. Hide My Ass! will disguise your IP address, and Incognito mode will ensure that cookies from visited websites are automatically deleted when you close the Incognito window.
Stay safe out there!