Tag - tracking

Why has the Internet started to lose public trust?

Some of the coolest things you discover and the most interesting things you read are through the Internet. Maybe you watched an amazing documentary about wild animals, streamed a live sports event, or just found out the latest news on your favorite celebrity.

On average, people spend around 8 hours online every day. Like many of us, you probably take the Internet for granted. But do you know which websites you should trust and which you shouldn’t? And why is trust important in the online world?

Let’s analyze together:

  • What does trust mean in the online world?
  • What was the Internet like in the beginning?
  • The Internet’s honeymoon period
  • How has trust in the Internet changed and evolved?
  • What happened that made people trust the Internet less?
  • The real-life implications of what we do online check the recent Facebook scandal 
  • How data breaches and cyber-attacks undermined trust in the Internet 
  • What governments want to persuade us that mass surveillance is for  
  • Did social media draw more people to the Internet or alienated them?
  • How can the Internet regain people’s trust? 
  • How you and I can make the Internet a better place 

What does trust mean in the online world?

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World Press Freedom Day – spotlight on the media’s impact on privacy awareness

Right now, you’re online, reading what you chose you wanted to read. You have the liberty of leaving a comment on platforms, even if it’s a bad one. You’re lucky because in some countries, people can’t enjoy freedom of speech. Sometimes, the situation is even worse and browsing the web comes with certain restrictions such as geo-blocking.
A recent case of blocked service occurred at the beginning of April when Russia banned Telegram.
However, in the last years, we have witnessed several similar cases that are first of all, a threat to our basic human rights.
Join us in taking a moment to celebrate World Press Freedom Day. Here’s why we believe it’s an important and timely reminder for all of us.

  • EU’s plan on creating an anti-fake news law
  • Fake news vs. real news
  • 5 stories that uncovered some of the world’s deepest secrets
  • Simple ways to spot fake news
  • The need for “identifying fake news” educational programs

But what exactly is the meaning of freedom of expression today, when we have all been heavily bombarded with fake news through all media channels?

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A new victory for people’s right to privacy: the use of cell site simulators was declared unconstitutional

A new victory in terms of people’s rights to personal privacy has come to pass. Although not directly related to online privacy, the D.C. Court of Appeals ruling from yesterday stating that the use of cell site simulators is unconstitutional is certainly good news.

Ok, what are cell site simulators?

Well, they are mass surveillance devices that makes peoples’ cellphones to be tracked in real time. They have been used for many years by state, local, and federal law enforcement in the United States, but apparently, their use was not transparent at all. They are usually fixed in a van and used with a directional antenna, but some of them are quite smaller, easily fitting in a backpack.

The controversy with cell site simulators

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Unblocking websites and apps is still a big problem in 2016

More than 2 billion people are living under online censorship

This is more than enough for CyberGhost team to continue our fight for the free internet in 2016 with even more power and over 650 servers worldwide.

But the news from the Web Index Report is not great: “The internet is less free, more unequal, and web users are at increasing risk of indiscriminate government surveillance”. In 2013, the report showed over 30% of Web Index countries were blocking politically or socially sensitive Web content to a moderate or extreme degree. In 2014 that figure went up to 38%.

Here is a good definition of content filtering, as a form of online censorship, from Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF):

“Many governments, companies, schools, and public access points use software to prevent Internet users from accessing certain websites and Internet services. This is called Internet filtering or blocking and is a form of censorship. Content filtering comes in different forms. Sometimes entire websites are blocked, sometimes individual web pages, and sometimes content is blocked based on keywords contained in it. One country might block Facebook entirely, or only block particular Facebook group pages—or it might block any page or web search with the words “falun gong” in it.”

Use CyberGhost to access safely censored content and protect your online privacy! Click to Tweet

And in recent days, other massively used apps, such as Whatsapp, have been blocked for short periods in Brazil and United Arab Emirates.

The current censorship situation around the world

Censorship map

At the same time, there is a fragile legal frame to support online freedom, with 84% of the countries having no effective laws and practices to protect the privacy of online communications. China is leading the top of countries blocking and filtering the web content. According to the same report, Uruguay allows its citizens the most online freedom.

When governments really cross the line, violating fundamental rights, like Turkey, during the “Big Ban” from March 2014, when the government blocked several web pages and access to YouTube, Twitter and Soundcloud,  international organizations and companies react strongly.  Several countries pressured Erdogan’s government to release the ban and CyberGhost offerd 30.000 Premium keys to Turkish citizens so they can use the internet unrestricted.

So there is hope. Out of the 45 Web Index countries with extensive constraints on speech, only seven (about 16%) seem to censor more heavily online than offline.

What can you do?

Use a trusted VPN to access safely the censored content and protect themselves and their online privacy.  In some cases, like the case of some journalists in conflict areas, even their life.

Here’s a video that explains how hiding your IP helps you unblock restricted websites and banned apps:

If you want to learn more on how to avoid being tracked online, read these 3 essential tips.

Does your government block access to an app or website? Enter here and tell us which ones and we will fight to help you unblock them with Cyberghost.

Does your government block access to an app or website? Use #CyberGhost to unblock them safely! Click to Tweet

So we just have to keep on reporting the abuses and demanding better laws to sustain online privacy for everybody, while using encrypted online connection.

© 2017 CyberGhost