For many, living as a digital nomad is a dream come true; the ability to travel at your leisure, work wherever and whenever you want, with nothing holding you back. However, there is much more to this idyllic way of life than meets the eye.
Being a digital nomad takes thought, preparation, and effort. You’ll need to make a packing list, schedule each of your trips, and arrange for snail mail delivery to your chosen destination.
While the majority of digital nomads have mastered the practical aspects of this lifestyle, one important component is often neglected.
We’re talking about internet privacy.
When taken for granted, online privacy may pose a threat to digital nomads. It may result in the loss of social media passwords, bank account information, and, in the worst-case scenario, even your full-time employment. In contrast to an office environment where the internet is protected and controlled, open and free-to-use internet hotspots are visible to everyone else connecting at the same time. This implies that any information you input or access may be intercepted and used for illegal purposes.
Fortunately, there are methods to maintain your internet privacy and to keep critical information you disclose online out of the wrong hands. All you have to do is follow the steps below and you may continue enjoying the life you’ve always desired.
Use a different search engine for non-work related browsing
If you’re like the majority of digital nomads, you rely largely on Google to do tasks. However, if you’re browsing the web at random during non-work hours, it may be prudent to utilize an anonymous search engine. Advertisers are not notified of your search activity or clicks on these search engines. Rather, they provide a safe environment and also disable ad trackers on websites you visit. DuckDuckGo, WolframAlpha, and Startpage are all excellent choices for anonymous search engines.
Be wary of local websites
Due to the nature of travel, the bulk of your online sessions will be spent on foreign websites. You are in danger since you are not used to accessing the local websites in some countries. Additionally, if the information is translated through an app, it becomes much more dangerous since warnings and safeguards are lost. If you are not vigilant, malware may be downloaded onto your laptop or notebook. As a result, attempt to educate yourself on the main websites utilized in certain countries. Additionally, refrain from buying or downloading anything online that you do need.
Install a Password Manager
With websites and accounts continually being hacked and compromised, having strong, difficult-to-guess passwords is critical. This makes it more difficult to remember, which is where a password manager comes in. This convenient application will remind you of your passwords and may assist you in creating unique passwords. Take the time to create strong passwords that will prevent an attacker from gaining access to your digital life. If you want to take things a step further, try utilizing two-factor authentication, which requires you to input a code texted to your phone in addition to your password and CAPTCHA. NordPass is a strong password manager that is well-suited for digital nomads.
Look for the HTTPS sign
Generally, there is no danger associated with accessing unencrypted websites. However, before sharing a file, making a purchase, or logging into your company’s cloud database, it’s a good idea to verify that the website you’re visiting begins with the prefix “HTTPS.” HTTPS implies that a website is encrypted, which makes hacking more difficult. Even if the website begins with the “HTTP” prefix, it is still unencrypted, and you should use caution while transmitting sensitive information over the internet. If you really must use an “HTTP” website, restrict your browsing to a minimum and always remember to have your antivirus active to avoid possible malware installation.
Limit the use of geo-tagging services
Generally, geolocation and geotagging applications are used to notify others of your position. Digital nomads like to inform their family, friends, and colleagues about their present position. They have no idea that the data gathered by these geotagging applications may potentially be exposed, as was the case with Dune! As a result, hackers may easily buy this data and monitor your position, which might result in bodily damage. This is a very compelling argument to disable geotagging on your devices. If you’re browsing the web on a smartphone, switching to airplane mode should also prevent the device from sending location data.
Browse in “Incognito” mode
Private browsing is another name for incognito browsing. The majority of online browsers have a feature called “private surfing.” By activating it, you are informing the browser that you do not want it to save browsing history and cookies on your system, thus mitigating some of the effects of malware and ad-trackers. Having said that, it will not conceal your browsing behavior from your internet service provider or any websites you plan to visit-it will just prevent them from keeping anything on your computer. All major browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera, support private browsing.
Use a VPN
As a digital nomad, you’ll spend the majority of your time moving between destinations and depending on public WiFi for internet access. This leaves you vulnerable to man-in-the-middle assaults and other kinds of attacks by hackers operating on the same network. Consider using a reputable virtual private network service such as NordVPN to help safeguard your sensitive information. VPNs allow nomads to conceal their internet behavior when traveling and utilizing public hotspots. Additionally, they provide remote access to a server at your chosen location. Finally, the best VPNs do not keep track of their clients’ personal information, their travel destinations, or the content they look for or buy. As a result, you can be certain that when you use a VPN, your sensitive information will remain anonymous and confidential. Utilize these strategies to fortify your online privacy and keep yourself secure while you fly out on a global trip.