So I thought I would start a helpful post concerning your internet usage.
The topic, what are you doing to clean up after yourself???
The internet is a wonderful thing, but unless proper precautions are taken, a history of the sites you visit is readily accessible to others who may use your computer. Temporary internet files capture information on sites you visit. History also does the same thing.
1. If you are e-mailing from your employment, be aware, most IT departments monitor the websites employees visit. They also can monitor your personal e-mail if you access it from your office. This can be grounds for dismissal. Also if you are using a corporate laptop, be sure to keep your pc cleaned using a internet cleaner program. Worst case scenario, your laptop crashes and needs to be sent to corporate who to investigate.. what will they find???
2. Have you cleaned your browser history AND your search history? If not, the next individual who uses your PC can have access to every site you have visited including provider sites. Do not think that setting your history to delete immediately will suffice. Sometimes it does.. other times it doesn't. You should manually clear it through "tools" before signing off.
a. Click on "tools" in your headers
b. Click on "internet tools"
c. Click on "delete files" and be sure to check "delete all offline content"
d. Click on "delete cookies"
e. Click on "clear history"
Also, do you know that your login information may be saved as well? That means that the next person who tries to login to the internet may get your ID (and possibly password) when they try to sign in to their own account.
a. Again, using the tools option, Click on tools.
b. Then a pull down menu will appear, click-on "internet options".
c. Click on the "content tab"
d. go to "autocomplete"
e. First click on "clear forms."
f. Second click on "clear passwords".
Another surprising glitch that I know holds true with SBC DSL. If you enter the internet through the DSL log-in and follow all the steps above, you may not have cleared everything. For DSL you can also access the internet simply by clicking on the Internet Explorer icon on your desktop. I have found, at least with SBC DSL, that often the history has to be removed by following these same steps through the screen on internet explorer. Why? Beats the heck out of me. So, I generally access the internet only through internet explorer.
3. Erasing Programs. There are numerous programs out there that will erase the history and temporary internet files stored by your computer. However, this one is free and I find it works well:
Supposedly you do not have to manually clean your internet tracks when using them, but I do so anyways. Also there is an option for a secure NSA delete (deletes and rewrites files 7 times). This is recommended. Rather be safe than sorry!
4. Your e-mail. Have a separate e-mail account, such as hotmail, if there is any concern that anyone in your household may have access to your e-mail account.
5. Also be aware that there are other ways to find out what you are doing. There is software available that can "capture keystrokes." In other words, if your SO suspects something, they can download this hidden software on your PC and have a record of everything you type?? Maybe the techies here can address this.
6. Be cautious when visiting the websites of providers. Some sites either ask you to add them to your listing of favorite sites (favorites is found on the toolbar of internet explorer) and others just do so. You may want to check this list from time-to-time to ensure that no additions have been added. Given that this is an adult industry where discretion is necessary, I have never understood why sites still do this.
7. Do not leave incriminating evidence on your PC. That includes e-mails from providers, photos, etc. Delete them immediately.
8. When you print out instructions to the provider's location, I recommend that you double check your printer to make sure that you didn't run out of paper with pages left to print, accidentally request multiple copies, etc. Also, leave the directions with the provider when you leave.
9. If you copied and pasted information from a provider's e-mail for any reason (perhaps the original e-mail has gotten so long with replies back and forth and you only want to print the directions so you copy them onto a separate page or document).. this information is stored in your computer's clipboard and can be pasted into other programs by anyone in the household. So, I recommend that you copy something from either the internet explorer toolbar or a document in your word processing program, so that this is the only thing that is stored in the clipboard memory.
The best advice, delete, clean and delete. Delete any e-mails that contain correspondence with providers. As much as you are tempted to save them to relive hot erotic moments, they can be your downfall and jeopardize you and the provider. And clean up after yourself by cleaning any history of your visits to TER and other sites. Finally, do not access these sites from your work.
1. It is never recommended that you use a corporate cell phone for contacting providers. Many companies look at phone logs.
2. If you lend your cell phone to a family member, be sure that you are the only one who may access voicemail messages. Keep the password to yourself.
3. Who looks at your bills? If your S/O pays the bills, she may question certain numbers that appear on the bill and decide to call them. Also, delete the phone numbers of providers you call from your call listing on your phone even if you are the only one who uses it. If you S/O is suspicious, she may decide to look at your call logs to see who you have been calling and who may be calling you back.
4. If worse comes to worse, get a prepaid phone. If you are registered with any verification services, list this phone as the one you will be calling from since many require that you ONLY call from the number they verify.
Even if you request no detail billing for your phone bill....guess what? The cell company still has those records and maintains them for some time. Thus, if someone wanted to see the call detail records, the cell company can provide them. Trust me, I know.
As Sinthia states, a 'hobby' phone is a very good idea.
Go to Radio Shack or any outlet that sells Virgin Mobil. I bought the phone on sale for $30 and a top up card for $20 good for three months. I have never gone over or needed to renew before the three months. It comes out to $7 a month for phone service and no records are kept. You can't beat it.
I originally bought it because Kandie Sweetbit's wouldn't see me unless I had one. It turns out to be the biggest favor she has done for me with the exception of BBBJTCIM !!
If you delete them a lot of good info such as logging into bank account, paid subscriptions of online magazines, etc, etc will be deleted. So you have to re-enter all that info.
My suggestion is to do all the Sinthia suggested but use windows XP or vista. The system as many of you know allows you to have multiple users on a single PC. I have one user as "guest" and then do all that Sinthia recommends.
Do providers maintain records of hobbyists for long? There is always a trail back from the providers... How often does this become "a problem" I wonder. It makes me a bit uncomfortable. I am hoping that the email and phone and "black book" trail I leave has an expiration date, personally.
Hobbyists can clean up after themselves all they want, but there is a trail from the other direction to some degree.
For those that don't want to have to carry or buy two phones, you can purchase prepaid SIM cards that will go in almost any modern cell phone. The chip fits in your wallet like a credit card and you can just open up the back of your phone and switch out the chip. That's how I don't have to explain to my SO why I have two phones.
Of course, be careful that your phone doesn't keep a call log, but you can rest assured that it won't be getting any voicemails or calls without the chip in.
And of course, prepaid SIMs are just like pre-paid phones, disposable, cheap, and if you pay cash, traceless.
First, download the Safari browser from the Apple website (it works on Windows too). Safari has a "private browsing" mode, we call it "porn mode" that doesn't save anything from that particular session. You don't create a new user name or anything, just turn it on and turn it off. It also leaves all your tracks intact from non-private session. Having no tracks or history looks suspicious in it self.
Also go to http://google.com/voice and sign up for a google voice account (free) with any gmail account (also free). Google voice gives you a free phone number that you can direct to any phone at anytime through a web interface. Or you can just have it take messages and not ring any phone. You can choose just about any area code you want (except 212, they're all taken) and you can have voice messages translated to text and emailed to you at a private email address as well.
At the very least you should be using Tor (can google tor project) to hide your actually IP from your email provider and anyone else trying to snoop on your data traffic.
It is a good idea to use encrypted email, but maybe its too soon for everyone to know how to put that in place. There are several good tutorials online for setting up pgp in popular email like gmail or there are anonymous email providers that don't keep activity logs and offer message encryption there are a few that are free but many of these are paid services.
Most modern computers have multicore processors that support a feature called virtualization. This allows you to run another operating system inside the one you're already using. You can find a program called VirtualBox to set up the environment it is free for personal use. I would recomend using it run T(A)ILS aka Amnesic/Incognito which is built to include tor and other measures to enable the most privacy. That projects website also has many other references regarding how to best secure your online communications and hiding identity elements.
If setting up a virtual machine sounds too complicated either run tor on your primary system (not really advised) or T(A)ILS is a LiveCD (or LiveUSB) which means it can boot from a CD or a USB and not interact with the systems hard drive (this approach is even more secure than the virtual machine approach). Just pop the disc in and restart the computer. If your computer does not boot from CD before boot from hard drive there are numerous tutorials available on how to change that setting in your BIOS.
Wally World and many other stores sell prepaid debit/credit cards you can buy these with cash which is useful in the event you need to pay for something (like your TER membership or anonymous email). Similarly Radioshack and Wally World cell pay as you go phones with recharge cards (aforementioned Virgin mobile is good as is Boost mobile) all of which can be paid in cash and can be used as burn phones. Tie that with the post mentioning Google voice service you have yourself an entire private communications setup. Just remember to take out the battery on the phones when you don't plan on using them GPS signal is transmitted to cell sites whenever the phone is powered!
When my phone was stolen back in December I asked for my phone records (numbers dialed) and I was told there was a new law that said I had to wait for the bill no matter what so it may have changed since then. I tried to find out the details of the new law from my cell phone company, but no one seemed to know. I was told that only LE could get the details for me.
You and anyone who has you number and virgin mobile key (password) can access them from the VM website. Pay cash for the phone and top-up card and activate from an unsecured wireless connection other than your own (so they haven't logged your isp, and of course use a bogus name and address when you activate. Then, to be really secure, throw the phone away periodically and get a new one (or let your time expire and reactivate with a new number).
I agree, Firefox rocks in that respect! And, if others on the same PC use IE, the history and cache are separate, such that if you clear everything in Firefox, it doesn't clear the IE info, and hence doesn't cause suspicion because the IE history keeps getting wiped.
use a guest account, instead create a new user, password protected, before each log-on session, thenonce the internet use session is over, do the procedures described above, but then delete the user;
Also, if you use an anti-virus/internet security program such as Norton's products, it also keeps logs - you need to clear them even after clearing the IE options;
If you have a home router/network, it also has logging features that track various info depending on what you set it to - those logs need to be cleared too.
another option when you first get a computer is to "partition" the harddrive, create a partition of about 5-10 GB size, load basic software for internet access/email unto it, then when you start up for hobby browsing/communication, have an option that runs that internet session via that partition. If OS and basic software take about 1-2 GB, anything else you do will be written into the remaining space. periodically, depending on the level of security you want, follow the above procedures, then save other files-video, images works great to fill the capacity of that partition, then erase it all, then repeat - that can make info virtually unretreivable.
You can't be sure. Don't take the chance. Guys have been fired from 6 figure jobs over this! Get a cheap laptop & use a 3G wireless adaptor... not tied to your regular phone! It's more costly but secure.