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Maintain your privacy when you're on the Internet

Maintain your privacy when you're on the Internet
PHOTO COURTESY OF SHUTTERSTOCK

Most of the time, when you're online, your privacy is at risk. Some Internet providers sell your ID to third-party companies, who may hit you up to do business with them, or sell you something.

At Komando.com, we're always telling you about the importance of keeping safe. In fact, there are Web browsers that do a pretty good job of hiding your identity, so you can use the Internet without worrying about who's secretly watching you do it, or sharing records of sites you've visited online.

The problem is your Domain Name System, which translates IP addresses into recognizable websites. For instance, 208.152.64.30 is the IP address that computers understand, but which you see as Komando.com sponsor Epson.

When you signed up for Internet access, your service provider automatically linked you with its DNS server. So, you may not realize that there are third-party DNS servers out there that promise to be faster and more secure. It's a good idea to have one, especially if you worry about your online identity, and who's looking at it, or selling it.

Given the way DNS works, whoever runs the DNS server you use can see everywhere you go online. That means your ISP has logs of where you browse. The government can subpoena that information if it wants, or your ISP might sell it to other companies, depending on their privacy policy.

Third-party DNS systems have the same drawback. You aren't entirely sure what the company running the servers is doing with your browsing information. However, there's one company that tells you exactly what it's doing.

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