Phone call logs, credit card records, emails, Skype chats, Facebook message, and more. The precise nature of the NSA’s sweeping surveillance apparatus has yet to be confirmed.
But given the revelations spilling out into the media recently, there hardly seems a single aspect of daily life that isn’t somehow subject to spying or surveillance by someone.
Experts say there are steps anyone can take to improve privacy, but they only go so far.
Using anonymity services and encryption “simply make it harder, but not impossible,” said Ashkan Soltani, an independent privacy and security researcher. “Someone can always find you just depends on how motivated they are.”
With that caveat, here are some basic tips to enhance your privacy
1) Encrypt your emails
Emails sent across the Web are like postcards. In some cases, they’re readable by anyone standing between you and its recipient. That can include your webmail company, your Internet service provider and whoever is tapped into the fiber optic cable passing your message around the globe – not to mention a parallel set of observers on the recipient’s side of the world.
Experts recommend encryption, which scrambles messages in transit, so they’re unreadable to anyone trying to intercept them. Techniques vary, but a popular one is called PGP, short for “Pretty Good Privacy.” PGP is effective enough that the U.S. government tried to block its export in the mid-1990s, arguing that it was so powerful it should be classed as a weapon.
Encryption can be clunky. And to work, both parties have to be using it.
2) Use TOR
Like emails, your travels around the Internet can easily be tracked by anyone standing between you and the site you’re trying to reach. TOR, short for “The Onion Router,” helps make your traffic anonymous by bouncing it through a network of routers before spitting it back out on the other side. Each trip through a router provides another layer of protection, thus the onion reference.
Originally developed by the U.S. military, TOR is believed to work pretty well if you want to hide your traffic from, let’s say, eavesdropping by your local Internet service provider. And criminals’ use of TOR has so frustrated Japanese police that experts there recently recommended restricting its use. But it’s worth noting that TOR may be ineffective against governments equipped with the powers of global surveillance.
Browsing the web with TOR can be painfully slow. And some services – like file swapping protocols used by many Internet users to share videos and music – aren’t compatible.
3) Ditch the phone
Your everyday cellphone has all kinds of privacy problems. In Britain, cellphone safety was so poor that crooked journalists made a cottage industry out of eavesdropping on their victims’ voicemails. In general, proprietary software, lousy encryption, hard-to-delete data and other security issues make a cellphone a bad bet for storing information you’d rather not share.
An even bigger issue is that cellphones almost always follow their owners around, carefully logging the location of every call, something which could effectively give governments a daily digest of your everyday life. Security researcher Jacob Appelbaum has described cellphones as tracking devices that also happen to make phone calls. If you’re not happy with the idea of an intelligence agency following your footsteps across town, leave the phone at home.
Not having a cellphone handy when you really need it. Other alternatives, like using “burner” phones paid for anonymously and discarded after use, rapidly become expensive.
4) Cut up your credit cards
The Wall Street Journal says the NSA is monitoring American credit card records in addition to phone calls. Some cybercriminals can use the same methods. So stick to cash, or, if you’re more adventurous, use electronic currencies to move your money around if you want total privacy.
Credit cards are a mainstay of the world payment system, so washing your hands of plastic money is among the most difficult moves you can make. In any case, some cybercurrency systems offer only limited protection from government snooping and many carry significant risks. The value of Bitcoin, one of the better-known forms of electronic cash, has oscillated wildly, while users of another popular online currency, Liberty Reserve, were left out of pocket after the company behind it was busted by international law enforcement.
5) Don’t keep your data in America or with American companies
U.S. companies are subject to U.S. law, including the Patriot Act, whose interpretations are classified. Although the exact parameters of the PRISM data mining program revealed by the Guardian and The Washington Post remain up for debate, what we do know is that a variety of law enforcement officials – not just at the NSA – can secretly demand your electronic records without a warrant through an instrument known as a National Security Letter. Such silent requests are made by the thousands every year.
If you don’t like the sound of that, your best bet is to park your data in a European country, where privacy protections tend to be stronger.
Silicon Valley’s Internet service providers tend to be better and cheaper than their foreign counterparts. What’s more, there’s no guarantee that European spy agencies don’t have NSA-like surveillance arrangements with their own companies. When hunting for a safe place to stash your data, look for smaller countries with robust human rights records. Iceland, long a hangout for WikiLeaks activists, might be a good bet.
6) Steer clear of malicious software
If they can’t track it, record it, or intercept it, an increasing number of spies aren’t shy about hacking their way in to steal your data outright. Edward Snowden, the NSA leaker, warned the Guardian that his agency had been on a worldwide binge of cyber-attacks.
“We hack everyone everywhere,” he said.
Former officials don’t appear to contradict him. Ex-NSA chief Michael Hayden described it as “commuting to where the information is stored and extracting the information from the adversaries’ network.” In a recent interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, he boasted that “we are the best at doing it. Period.”
Malicious software used by hackers can be extremely hard to spot. But installing an antivirus program, avoiding attachments, frequently changing passwords, dodging suspicious websites, creating a firewall, and always making sure your software is up to date is a good start.
Keeping abreast of all the latest updates and warily scanning emails for viruses can be exhausting.
Global Internet Organization calls for Africans to claim their voice on the internet
By Our Reporter
A media roundtable brought together leaders of regional and global Internet organizations to share perspectives on African representation in the Internet ecosystem, and participation in shaping the Internet’s future.
Led by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and attended by the Internet Society’s Uganda Chapter, and AfRegistrar, the media roundtable took place during the Africa Internet Summit (AIS) at the Kampala Sheraton Hotel.
ICANN has been actively seeking to help raise awareness and build capacities around the domain name system, and the Internet in general across Africa. As part of this, it has been supporting and holding several workshops in the region.
“Africa’s digital potential is rising, which makes it imperative for the continent to claim its voice in the global Internet governance and protect its interests” stressed Pierre Dandjinou, ICANN VP of GSE in Africa. “With this in mind, ICANN is committed to providing equal opportunities to inform the region’s different communities about the domain name industry, and working with them on how best to not only strengthen Africa’s online presence, but also improve their participation within ICANN. Uganda is no exception.”
ICANN helps people connect to each other online. This happens through its coordination of parts of the Domain Name System (DNS), which is at the very root of the Internet functions. It translates computer host names into IP addresses, as well as the Internet Protocol addressing system used to route Internet traffic. Thus, ICANN plays a specific, technical role, acting in the global public interest as the trusted steward of these unique identifier systems of the Internet. With every email, video chat, or online purchase, ICANN is touched in one way or another. Also, ICANN helps protect the resiliency and security of the DNS and of Internet at large.
“We need to have this dialogue about the Internet now, and not later; as Africa is not outside the realms of the Internet. Every policy made about the future of the Internet concerns us, too. So, we need to join the decision-makers, and not stay as bystanders” said Lillian Nalwoga, the President of ISOC Uganda Chapter.
The Internet penetration in Africa is around 37%, still lagging behind with respect to the global penetration rate which is at 57%. Internet access is among the many other obstacles Africa has to overcome with respect to its integration into the global digital economy, including the domain name business.
“AfRegistrar will work closely with African Regulators, African Union and Private Sector to enable the emergency of a vibrant Internet Environment for the African Economy, with a good and active Internet Governance, in an active and harmonized Broadband Policy and Regulation for African countries” reiterated Mouhamet Diop, Chair of AfRegistrar.
Reach A Hand launches app to ease access to sexual and reproductive health information
By Our Reporter
Reach A Hand, Uganda (RAHU) has launched a mobile application which is specially designed to allow easy and convenient access to information about sexual and reproductive health & rights.
Dubbed “SAUTI plus”, the app which is available for download on the Google Play store seeks to help young people understand and safely exercise their Reproductive Health Rights. It provides a safe space where young people can ask and have questions about their sexual reproductive health answered.
Speaking at the launch of the app, Humphrey Nabimanya the RAHU Founder and Team Leader, said the application is an innovative milestone in the organization’s continuous effort to find effective ways of communicating with young people.
“We are always innovating and finding new ways to reach young people. The SAUTIplus application will go a long way in helping us achieve this. It is an innovative one stop mobile app for young people to receive information on Sexual Reproductive Health, livelihood, entrepreneurship and other opportunities in a language that they understand.” said Mr Nabimanya.
“The information on it is in various forms such as 60 second educative videos, street casts, blogs and podcasts. There is also a tab for a counsellor to offer solutions to the challenges of the young people.” He further explained.
The application also provides referrals to youth friendly health service centres reducing the stigma associated with young people and sexual reproductive focused health visits.
At the same event, RAHU also launched the new season of MTV Shuga Down South which is a series that uses sexual-health messaging with gripping storylines exploring the issues of sexual relationships between young people against a backdrop of continuing HIV infections.
The youth-focused series fosters discussions around the issues of unplanned pregnancy and HIV/AIDS on the continent and other youth centered issues such as abusive relationships, sexual assault and so much more.
Upgraded TECNO SPARK 3 Series with AI Bright Camera launched.
Upgraded TECNO SPARK 3 Series with AI Bright Camera launched.
By Staff Writer
It’s that time of the year when phone manufacturing companies come up with different handset models. TECNO Uganda has today officially launched its newest Series smartphones, the TECNO Spark and the Spark 3 Pro at Sheraton Hotel.
According to Tecno, the two new handset Models are said to be the latest of the Spark Series with improved Camera features among other awesome things. The Camera comes with Artificial intelligence technology (AI Tech) as opposed to their predecessors that is the Spark 2 and 2 Pro.
Both phones run a 9.0 pie Android operating system with a 6.2-inch display LCD capacitive touchscreen with a Trendy and classy appearance. The phones come with improved storage capacity and run 4G LTE.
Definitely the new Series tick the boxes its predecessors failed to.
Some of the Specifications of the spark 3 include:
- 6.2-inch capacitive display touch screen with an aspect ratio of 19:9
- Runs Android 9.0 pie operating system (pre-installed on the phone)
- 4G LTE
- Face ID
- 32GB internal storage
- Quad-core 2.5GHz Media Tek Helio A22 with up to 2GB RAM minimises lagging of applications and renders multi-tasking possible respectively.
- Finger print Sensor
- 3,500 mAh Li-ion battery
- 8MP selfie camera and 13MP + 2MP rear cameras with a LED flash for Bright and better Crisp pictures in poorly lit areas.
Other specifications include Bluetooth V5.0, 3.5mm earphone jack, Wi-Fi, sensors i.e. fingerprint sensor, proximity sensor, G-sensor and Ambient Light sensor, powerVR GE8320 GPU stationed on the phone chip provides quality graphics.
“The success of these latest series Spark 3 and 3 Pro respectively is deemed to surpass its predecessors” narrated the Tecno mobile Uganda Marketing Manager, Gladys Liu speaking at the launch at Sheraton Hotel.
These comments come in review with a positive shift in the sales performance of the Spark 2 and 2pro
The Tecno Spark 3 Series are available in 4 colors; Midnight Black, Bordeaux Red, Aqua blue and champagne Gold.
The smartphones are now up for sale in various smartphone online stores and shops with price tag of UGX429,000 and UGX 489,000 respectively effective of today Monday 6th 2019.
HOT RIGHT NOW
- Celebrity Gossip4 days ago
Ykee Benda becomes a father, set to celebrate in Burundi
- Celebrity Gossip3 days ago
Weasel Now Dating Miss Rwanda; Opening Borders of Love
- Featured2 days ago
Lynda Ddane is Making Men Go Crazy on TV: Martha Kay’s Successor
- Celebrity Gossip2 days ago
Song alert: Beckie 256 returns in double release
- Featured5 days ago
Banzega: How Kisekka Market Mechanics Rob Car Owners; Ring Leader Revealed
- Featured3 days ago
Engineer Peterson Mwesigwa Is Once Again Overall Best Student at LDC
- Celebrity Gossip19 hours ago
Fresh Kid’s USA Tour Cancelled as promoter can’t afford ticket for Singer’s father
- Celebrity Gossip3 days ago
Joan Lule takea SITIMA Y’AMAKA to Top TV