The following is a Plus Edition article, written by and copyright by Dick Eastman.
This is an update of an article I published last year. Several things have changed since I published the first article. Therefore, I have updated this article to reflect the changes.
I am a big fan of security, both online and off. I admit to being a bit phobic about online security. I also travel a lot and don’t trust public wi-fi networks in airports, hotels, and elsewhere. In fact, I am even a bit leery of the broadband Internet connection installed in my home. The in-home network is probably safer to use than most public wi-fi networks but nothing is ever perfect. In theory, someone might be intercepting my communications for nefarious purposes. (“Can you spell NSA?”) For the past year, I have been using an encrypted Internet connection and a super-secure web browser.
This software encrypts each and every byte of information I send or receive on the Internet, keeping my information away from prying eyes in the next hotel room or on the wi-fi network I am using at the moment or even from professional spies in remote locations. I suspect it keeps data safe from the NSA although that agency will not confirm or deny the security of this method of encryption. Then again, the U.S. military uses this method to keep information secret from our enemies so I suspect the NSA has tested it and verified it as being impenetrable. Again, I “suspect” but cannot prove it.
The software I am using should eliminate most security concerns. I found it to be super-easy to install and use. Best of all, this high level of security is available free of charge for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux.
Actually, “install” is the wrong word. There is no software to install in the normal method of installing other programs. Simply download the required software for Windows, Macintosh, or Linux. Then click on one icon and an encrypted, secure connection starts and then launches a super-secure web browser. When finished, click on another icon to delete the encrypted connection or power off the computer. There is nothing to install or uninstall.
In fact, you can even use this method on a borrowed computer, such as a friend’s system or at work or at school or when using a public access computer at a local library or Internet cafe. All you need is a flash drive or a CD-ROM disk with the proper software installed; insert that flash drive or CD into the borrowed computer, and run the program from the flash drive or CD-ROM disk. When finished, exit the program and remove the flash drive or CD-ROM from the computer. No “tracks” are left behind. The next user of that computer will not have any access to your information, not even in the browser’s “cache files” the way normal web browsers often store your secrets.
Is this perfect security? Not really. Nothing is ever perfect. However, the use of this software certainly keeps most prying eyes locked out. I would guess that 99.9999% of the would-be hackers will be locked out of my connections and unable to view my credit card numbers, passwords, or other sensitive information I might send over the Internet. I will settle for 99.9999% security instead of the normal risks.
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