How to Protect From Metadata Retention? The dark clouds of metadata retention law and its strict implementation has overshadowed the maximum region of the world, and the netizens under these clouds are looking for some sunshine that can provide them ways to protect from metadata retention. This ubiquitous metadata retention practice has profoundly affected. The netizens leaving them with zero freedom of using the Internet. And the netizens consider it an attack. On their online privacy and the fundamental human right to protect their private data.
Online privacy has been mocked up by the governments. Of many pro-metadata retention states. Where the government has failed to address the concerns of the people. Whose rights have to be safeguarded by the state. Unfortunately, it is the state that is attacking their right to protecting their internet data. There has been a flurry of discussion about metadata retention breaking out across the world. With the speed of light whereas the netizens are looking up the ways. By which they could take their online privacy into their own hands. Here we come to guide you all. About how to protect from metadata retention anywhere in the world.
What Is Metadata?
Without going into complexities. Let me put it into simple words. That metadata is the data about data. In other words. It is the set of data that tell about how and when any particular activity took place. For example, the timing and duration of your call. The caller name and number, message schedules and details of the recipient. Email logs, IP address, location, web URL, etc. Such information falls under metadata category.
So if you are living in a pro metadata retention country. Then your government must have authorized the ISPs to retain your metadata. And you need to find ways to protect from metadata retention. (read our ultimate privacy guide to know in detail).
Why the Government Support this law?
Globally, the governments of pro metadata retention states. Justify this ill practice by calling it a potential way of reaching criminals. Hence reducing the rate of crime in the world. Well, this seems a lame excuse. As this law has been implementing in many nations across the world. But the crime rate is still on the fast wheels especially cybercrime. Cybercrime reminds me that this preservation of a huge amount of data. That could be the biggest attraction of hackers and ransomware culprits.
It is because this data could work as a piece of meat. For the hackers to smell it and target it for ransom. The ISPs and Telecommunication companies have already drawn the attention. Of authorities towards this threat but no measures to be seen yet. (also see 7 ways to avoid being hacked). So this is the high time for us to prevent our online data. From going into others’ hands and protect from metadata retention.
How Does It Affect Any Common Netizen?
There is no denying the fact that metadata retention could bring some serious threats. To your online privacy. Imagine how would you feel if the government knows. To whom you talk, when do you call, which emails do you get. To whom do you talk to social media, details about your money transaction and much more. Could you bear this much of data breaching? If not then let me tell you that. If you are living in the pro metadata retention land. Then your government is already doing all this. Read on to know how to protect from metadata retention.
Ways to Protect your Data from Metadata Retention
Some security advocates and journalists claim that avoiding metadata retention is an easy job. Whereas what my stance regarding this is. If it would be easy then why the government had spent hundreds of million dollars. To implement this law. On the other hand, many of the netizens are now even aware of this law. And how they are contributing to this pernicious practice. That has been breaching their private data from many years. Here we have compiled several ways. Through which you can protect from metadata retention. Decide it yourself whether or not it is easy.
Taking the help of Onion routing could be a good and free way of avoiding metadata retention as it hides your IP address through multiple layers of encryption. These multiple layers of encryption make it impossible for the ISP or hacker to track your IP address. But at the same time, these multiple layers of encryption could make your connection sluggish. Tor or the onion routing will not be a good choice if you want to stream videos or play online games because it could give you a killing experience of gaming and streaming. (also see “Is using Tor Safe For Privacy?”)
Virtual Private Network is a dedicated security software that works by routing your Internet data traffic to an encrypted tunnel in order to hide your data from the outsourcing. Not even your ISP can see your data and IP. All your ISP could see is the encrypted tunnel but can not intercept it. Moreover, the good VPN like ExpressVPN or NordVPN never compromise on the connection speed and do not limit the bandwidth in the bid to provide you with the better experience of video streaming and gaming.
These VPNs also come at an affordable price with the best of quality. It is worth mentioning here that the free VPN usually does the opposite of what they are supposed to do. Many of them are reported to pass the user’s data from the back door. So better not to go for free VPNs.
Use Mobile Calls and Message Encryption:
The software market is flooding with the apps and programs that are dedicated to encrypt your calls and messages and assure you that the level of encryption would be military grade end to end encryption. However, there is no guarantee whether or not such services have joined hands with the government to share your data from backdoor while you think it is a good way to protect from metadata.
Use Metadata Protected Email Services:
There have been few reliable email services that provide end to end encryption to your emails like Protonmail or Tutanota. Whereas the leading services do not claim to give an end to end encryption to a great extent. But you can also use third party email protection software to get your emails encrypted like Mailvelope and protect from metadata retention.
Beware Of Social Media Tracking:
You may not know that your social media account such as Facebook, Twitter or other accounts have been continuously snooped (read 5 Facebook Privacy Setting You Need To Know). Such accounts can reveal many of our personal information to the hands of unknown. These data tracking could be done for targeted advertising purpose or could be handed over to authorities. You can block this tracking by using browser extensions like Disconnect or Privacy Badger and hence you can protect from metadata retention.
Conclusion-How to Protect From Metadata Retention?
Undoubtedly this is the era when the internet privacy threats are at its peak. Not only metadata retention but also the UK and US regimes policy to sanction the ISPs to sell your data for targeted ads. Be it any threat; it is time to take serious measures in order to protect from metadata retention or any other threat to your online privacy. ( also check out the ultimate privacy guide)