Tor, TAILS & VPNs – Tested And Proven 5 Star Privacy Protection For Online Activity
Dr. Michael Christianson
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The Tor Project – The Crown Jewel of Online Privacy & Freedom
La Porte (IFA) © Michael Christianson. We’re extremely proud to announce major improvements to the Tor online privacy and security browser. Today, with Tor, you can protect yourself against government or law enforcement tracking, surveillance, and censorship while online. Tor is FREE, but the Tor Project is funded entirely by the goodwill donations of its users and other nonprofit organizations. With Tor, you can expect quality and confidentiality while you surf the internet – doing whatever it is you do (cuz we don’t judge.)
If you are in a country, like America, where Google, Facebook, Youtube, Yahoo, Edge, Flickr, and a host of other search engines and online social sharing sites monitor your every activity and report your violations of their overly broad policies and laws to the NSA, the FBI, and local law enforcement (often utilizing online snitches), you’ll soon come to appreciate the strong security and freedom you get with Tor. Even if you aren’t on social media sites, there are millions of so-called “do-gooders” in your family and your household who like to snoop on their brothers and sisters, moms and dads, aunts and uncles, etc. who would betray your trust and privacy in a heartbeat. Even though it’s not their goddamn business if you’re laundering money, having an affair, or surfing porn hub.
Face it. It’s better safe than sorry. And Tor is the safest thing going right now to protect your privacy online.
The Tor Browser On A USB Stick. Yummy!
Another of the remarkable achievement of the Tor browser is it’s fab ability to be instantly downloaded and installed onto a USB thumb drive/stick of your choosing. When using the Tor Browser USB version, you’ll be able to plug into any PC/laptop, connect to the internet, surf privately wherever you are, and never leave a trace of your online activities for the IT department, your family, friends, or nosey neighbors to uncover. It’s like you were never there. In fact, once the USB stick is plugged in, the entire operation bypasses the computer’s operating system(s)! If that isn’t remarkable I don’t know what is.
To learn how to install Tor onto a USB stick, please click here. GitHub has a really nice tutorial about the Tor Browser Portable edition. Tor Browser Portable requires Microsoft Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP
The Tor Update
For now, Tor is the strongest tool for privacy and freedom online. Tor, not too long ago, released a few great updates. So, now it’s not too complicated to install and use. Plus, you can be up and running in a matter of minutes.
For starters, Tor will automatically block browser plugins such as Flash, RealPlayer, Quicktime, and others since they can be manipulated into revealing your IP address.
You can download the Tor source code for version 0.4.0.5 here. Have a look, you’ll be amazed at the superior markup.
The Tor Project’s browser is at its maximum best when you couple it with a reputable VPN service provider. A VPN is a Virtual Private Network, something like an electronic tunnel, that you use to stay below ground while surfing the internet. Everyone else – law enforcement, spies, snoops, ISPs, etc., – are above ground, unable to penetrate into your private tunnel. Think of it as driving your car on your own private express lane, from place to place, while being completely concealed from the view of all the other cars on the road. So, a great VPN – from reputable service providers – will give you complete anonymity to surf the internet without your internet service provider or snoops knowing where you’re coming from, what you’re doing, where you’re going, or what your true IP address is. Below, we’ve included a link to 5 of the best VPNs that work well with the Tor browser.
Wow! The Amnesic Incognito Live System (or TAILS)
TAILS is a live operating system that is stored on a USB drive or DVD. By that, we mean that TAILS (on a USB stick or DVD) acts much like the Windows operating system but without all of the violations of your privacy. TAILS is another great privacy tool for everyone surfing the internet – men, women, and children. Whether or not your surfing is ethical or unethical, TAILS aims to guard and protect your right of access to the information, files, and images of your choosing – without prejudice or censorship. You can use TAILS on WINDOWS, MACOS, and LINUX systems.
With TAILS you can:
- Use the internet anonymously and bypass the censors and snitches and snoops.
- Leave no trace on the computer you are using unless you ask for it expressly.
- Use state-of-the-art encryption for our files, emails, and instant messaging.
- surf via the Tor network.
- To get the most up-to-date version of TAILS, click here.
To install TAILS you will need:
- A USB stick (at least 8 GB)
- Up to one hour to download TAILS (1.2 GB) (If you know someone you can trust, you can install TAILS using their personal copy.)
- Up to 1/2 hour to install TAILS.
Installation of TAILS
For user-friendly instructions for ordinary folks please follow this link. Right now there are two versions of TAILS. TAILS for USB sticks and TAILS for DVDs and virtual machines. We recommend using the DVD version if you’re super paranoid and don’t want the cops being able to uncover your hidden TAILS. Yes. Electronics-sniffing dogs used by cops is an actual thing now. One draw back to using TAILS is that you will not be able to store anything on the USB stick or the DVD. Everything you search for is read-only. No downloading, no cut-and-pasting.
Keep The Privacy Flowing
If you never share one thing in your entire lifetime, please decide to share this article with your family, friends, social connections, and nice strangers you meet on the street. Let’s stripe the cops and snitches of their power to destroy lives and wreck homes. Helping to protect everyone’s privacy and liberty is noble and selfless.