Three Plug-ins to Help You Browse the Web Securely and Protect Your Privacy Online

In today’s post I’d like to explain my choice of browser plug-ins which help me browse the web securely and with a degree of privacy. The following advice will not create an impenetrable bubble of security and privacy but rather aims to keep as much of your data and as under-your-control as possible.

The plug-ins I have selected are the ones I use for my day-to-day browsing. They are compatible with Google Chrome and/or Firefox (that should also include other browsers that can run Firefox/Chrome compatible add-ons such as Tor and/or Chromium). The final prerequisite is that all of these add-ons are free and open-source. This is not only because I wish to support developers who decide to make their code freely available, but also because the transparency of the open-source model allows for the most security.

My suggested add-ons are thus:

  • HTTPS Everywhere, which encrypts your communications with many major websites.
  • Privacy Badger, which stops advertisers and other third-party trackers from secretly tracking what pages you look at.
  • NoScript/ScriptBlock, which allows you to control what scripts your browser can run.

HTTPS Everywhere is an extension which was developed as a collaboration between The Tor Project and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. This plug-in encrypts your communication with other websites whenever possible, this is by no means fool proof, but it does makes the best use of encryption without getting in the end-user’s way.

Privacy Badger, another extension from the EFF which, “stops advertisers and other third-party trackers from secretly tracking where you go and what pages you look at”. It’s important to understand that at the time of writing, Privacy Badger only protects users against third-party tracking. Your browser and the websites you visit can freely exchange information but the third party advertising and tracking agencies will be blocked using heuristic blocking. The heuristic blocking technique used by Privacy Badger has been hailed as a non-corporate answer to Disconnect which relies on a blacklist of bad actors to protect you.

NoScript is the best privacy and security plug-in available. It works by blocking all JavaScript (and other elements) by default and then letting you white-list scripts you feel comfortable running. That means that anything a website does has to be personally approved by you to proceed. The obvious downside to this is that surfing the web become a slightly more involved process. It’s something I’ve gotten used to, but it might not be suitable for particularly inexperienced computer users.

ScriptBlock is Google Chrome’s answer to NoScript. It offers most of the features available in NoScript.

I hope my recommendations on how to browse the web more securely have been useful. If you’d like an impression on the kind of information you might be giving away, is a great website which tells you which information a website can access.

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Chris Were has Been Announced as the Green Party’s Candidate in Monmouth for the 2016 Elections to the National Assembly of Wales

Green TieChris said, “Welsh politics lacks young people and new ideas. The polls are predicting Greens to win seats in the next National Assembly government and by voting for, and sending Greens to represent you, we can hold other politicians to account and make sure that promises made by fellow progressives from other parties are kept.

Greens in Wales including myself unapologetically demand real action on climate change and protecting the Welsh environment. We demand the protection and restoration of our civil rights which have been, and continue to be, drastically eroded under previous governments. We demand real equality and social justice and we will make sure that the next assembly government is a government for every single person in this country.

As your Green candidate I intend my campaign to be one of honesty and respect to other candidates and to the electorate. I really don’t like that in today’s culture it’s considered ‘good politics’ to dumb down political messaging, and that is something I refuse to do.”

Chris Were has enjoyed living in Monmouth for most of his life. He works as an open-source software and online video consultant, working with individuals and businesses from around the world.

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Thank You to all 1,629 People Who Voted for me and for Helping me Triple the Green Vote Here in Monmouth

I’d like to take a moment to congratulate David Davies on his successful result for the Monmouth constituency in this general election. I also couldn’t help but notice Monmouth’s voter turnout comes in at 6.2% higher than the national average, which is nothing if not positive.

I’d like to thank David as well as Ruth Jones, Veronica German, Gareth Dunn, Jonathan Clark and Stephen Morris for their positive campaigning which has allowed each party to express their views, free from petty insults and personal attacks.

In addition, I’d like to thank the local press for fair and balanced coverage of this election season.

Lastly (but not least) I’d like to thank every Green voter and supporter who helped myself and the Greens increase our vote. Thank You.

Posted in Politics