NovemberReport - page 5

November 2013 CBA REPORT
cover article
t seems like almost every day there’s
a story in the news on how your daily
life can be tracked and your safety
can be breached. As a result, more people
have become interested in how to protect
themselves and remain anonymous in
our ever changing electronic world.
Below are some tips for maintaining your
privacy while searching the web.
You can’t protect yourself if you
don’t know what’s being said or
published about you. In order to track
what’s being said, I always suggest setting
up an alert on your name to monitor any
news or websites that might mention
your name. Google, Bing, Talkwalker
and Mention all have alert features that
can be used to monitor names, topics and
In the last few months, Google has
been experiencing some difficulties with
their alert feature which has prompted
many to find alternatives to their alert-
ing service. Two excellent alternatives
to Google Alerts are Talkwalker and
Mention. Talkwalker is very similar to
Google Alerts and will deliver results
directly to your email address or to an
RSS reader. Mention also allows you to
create an alert on your name or any other
subject and have the results delivered to
your email or mobile device.
Note: Men-
tion’s free service only allows 500 alert
results per month, so be sure to keep your
searches narrow!
Use Anonymous Search
As more information becomes
available on how Google, Bing and other
search engines track your movements
and searches on the web, many people
are now searching for sites that will
allow them to search for information
anonymously. Search engines such as
provide excellent search results and make
a point not to track you or the searches
you perform online.
Block the Trackers
There are a number of browser
extensions that can be used to
protect your privacy by blocking third
parties who track your movements on
the Internet. Adblock Plus, Ghostery and
Disconnect are some of the better anti-
tracking extensions because they block
social networking sites such as Facebook,
Twitter and Google+ from monitoring
your movements after you leave their
site. All services are available for Firefox,
Chrome, and IE.
Retail Tracking
Many retail stores are now track-
ing your movements via Wi-Fi
signals. How does this work? In simple
terms, when your mobile device is turned
on, it is constantly searching for a signal
and will emit identifying information
about your device as it tries to connect to
other nearby signals.
All retail stores have to do is to set up
Wi-Fi access points within each depart-
ment and monitor how many gadgets
try to connect and for how long. In the
future, stores will be able to target elec-
tronic coupons directly to your mobile
device based on the departments you
Since the tracking feature relies on
the Wi-Fi connection, turning off your
phone or turning off the Wi-Fi connec-
tion until you are finished shopping is
an easy way to circumvent the tracking.
To turn off Wi-Fi for Androids: Go to
By Mary Lynn Wagner
for Protecting Your
Privacy Online
8 Tips
• Talkwalker
• Mention
• DuckDuckGo
• StartPage
• Ixquick
• Google Alerts
• Ghostery
• Disconnect
• Mailinator
• Best Password Managers
• LastPass
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