Safe internet browsing

Some recommendations for safe internet browsing.

Use Firefox web browser. Google's Chrome is also good, though Firefox is more customizable.

Get Ghostery as an add-on for Firefox or Chrome. It will make you a "ghost" on the internet by blocking approximately 1800 trackers, advertisers, beacons, widgets, etc.

By blocking up to 30 external sites from loading content into each page you visit, it will reduce the time it takes to load pages and make it harder to track you as you navigate about the web. Try it and be shocked at how many sites track your every page load. Including banking sites!

Also, FlashBlock add-on for Firefox is essential. It stops auto-playing video and audio, replacing them with a triangular "play" button that allows you to start when you're ready. No more surprise loud noises on page loads, including annoying advertisements.

For the very security conscious, those that don't mind a bit of effort, NoScript stops Firefox from running JavaScript in web pages unless you approve them. Sites can be white-listed if you trust them. Again, this one takes some work, but many IT professionals use it; you may (or may not) like it too.

If you're concerned about being tracked on the Internet, you may wish to consider using a search engine that does not track or "bubble" you. For example, Google, while they provide amazing services and have been an upstanding Internet citizen, track every single search you've ever made. And match it against your Gmail profile, phone number and address (if you use their Maps, Navigation, or Android contacts), for example.

DuckDuckGo is an oddly-named but pleasant search engine that does not track you.

StartPage is another fine search engine, and they call themselves the world's most private search engine.


The U.S. and UK governments on Monday advised computer users to consider using alternatives to Microsoft Corp's Internet Explorer browser

It really doesn't get much worse than this, folks. Get a new browser ASAP.

The Internet Explorer bug, disclosed over the weekend, is the first high-profile computer threat to emerge since Microsoft stopped providing security updates for Windows XP earlier this month. That means PCs running the 13-year-old operating system will remain unprotected, even after Microsoft releases updates to defend against it.

End of Windows XP support: How it will affect you

The Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team said in an advisory released on Monday that the vulnerability in versions 6 to 11 of Internet Explorer could lead to "the complete compromise" of an affected system.