In the article entitled The Spy in your Pocket over at Privacy Snapper, we spoke about some of the problems with Bit, the name we gave to your mobile device. Now, we begin looking into some tools you can give Bit to ward off those looking to access your personal information. This article highlights five free applications you can add to your mobile device to increase your personal privacy. There are many great privacy applications available for your mobile device, but to join our list of five, the applications needed to be free for users and be available on both Android and IOS devices.
1. SpiderOak Cloud Storage
With the increasing use of clouds for information storage, SpiderOak has created a ‘zero-knowledge’ cloud that focuses on user privacy. What is special about SpiderOak is that all of your information is encrypted before it travels to the cloud. The decryption key is held locally by you, not even SpiderOak can read the information you have stored. Users receive 2GB of storage for free. If you wish to upgrade to a paid subscription, you can get access to a terabyte of storage space. It is important to note that the mobile application is read-only at present time. While you can access your secure information on the cloud, you cannot upload from your mobile device.
2. SurfEasy VPN
If you haven’t noticed from previous articles, we really enjoy a good VPN (Virtual Private Network). Even better is when you can get access to a VPN on your mobile device for free. SurfEasy is a VPN service that gives you 500mb of data for free each month. There are of course paid plans that give you more access to data, but there are a few ways of earning free data set up by SurfEasy. Referring friends to SurfEasy is one way to gain more data. If you need more information on what a VPN is or how it works, check out this informative video made by CyberGhost.
Implementing a good password manager is one of the easiest ways to maintain secure passwords for all of your websites. 1Password is a password manager available for free to keep all of your login information stored in one secure location; all you require is your master password to unlock 1Password. Passwords are encrypted as they sit in your 1Password protecting you incase someone gets a hold of your device. In addition to passwords, 1Password can also store credit card information to make online purchasing more convenient. There is a pro version of 1Password available if you do wish to purchase more functionality. Check out this video from AgileBits, the company that created 1Password.
ChatSecure is a product positioned in a saturated market. The encrypted messenger joins services like Cryptocat and Signal in attempting to keep our messages private. I chose ChatSecure as a product to highlight because of it’s ability to connect to pre-existing messaging platforms like Google Talk and Facebook Messenger. In this way, you can still connect to your favourite messaging services and employ ChatSecure’s encryption. In addition, ChatSecure utilizes strong encryption and it’s source code is available on GitHub for those who wish to look it over. Links, the IOS source code is here and the Android code is here.
5. DuckDuckGo for Mobile
DuckDuckGo has long been known as the search engine that does not track you or log your personal information. This search engine is, like the others, available for free as an app on Android and IOS, bringing the functionality of private searching to your phone. We spoke exclusively about DuckDuckGo in one of our previous articles linked here.
It is important to protect your privacy on your mobile devices in addition to your personal computer. As stated in the introduction, there are many fine privacy applications to protect your mobile device. This article highlights five great tools that are the most accessible to users. Please take some time and comment about some mobile apps you enjoy using to protect your privacy.
About Ryan Jeethan
Ryan is a recent graduate of the University of Waterloo’s Arts & Business program focusing on UW’s unique Speech Communication program.