How to Protect your Data

1. Less is more

Data that you don’t share does not need to be protected at all. The next time you are asked for personal data, remember: the last time you received a coffee for it – what is it this time? And if you feel like you really have to provide personal data to get what you want online: consider providing false information.

2. Secure and diverse passwords

A secure password is at least twelve characters long, contains small and capital letters, numbers and special characters. It also cannot be derived from personal data such as name, birthday or place of residence. Password managers like keepassxc.org can help you use diverse and secure passwords online. And: use Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) whenever possible.

3. Choose respectful alternatives

Big tech companies provide us with free services like search engines or communication apps to gather as much data on us as possible. Thereby they can analyse and influence our preferences, needs and behavior. If you want to stay in control of your data and yourself, here are more trustworthy and free alternatives to some of the most used apps (installing those requires max 5 minutes each):

Search engine (like Google)
DuckDuckGo: Does not collect or store any of your personal information.

Chat app (like Whatsapp)
Signal: Contains all relevant functions, is free of charge and respects your privacy: It's open source with end-to-end encryption and no advertising.

Browser (like Chrome)
Mozilla Firefox: The browser of the non-profit Mozilla Foundation is dedicated to "safe surfing".

Email service (like Gmail)
Proton Mail: This is a Swiss company providing a secure email service.

4. Take security updates seriously

The security updates of the manufacturers help to close gaps. They keep operating systems up to date and should be installed as quickly as possible.

5. Block Tracking

Many companies quietly track you as you browse the web, recording what web pages you visit, for how long, and more. Plugins protect you from getting tracked. You can test how safe your browser already is using this online test by the Electronic Frontier Foundation or you can simply install all of the following recommendations, since they provide complementary services:

More helpful links

[EN] Discover this well-designed and efficient online course on data protection by Tactical Tech.

[DE] In diesem Video zeigt SRF auf, warum Datenschutz wichtig ist.

[DE] Das zweiseitige Handbuch von Sarah Genners Ausstellung «Privatsphäre» im Stadthaus Zürich zeigt, wie man den Datensammlern die Arbeit schwerer machen kann.

[DE] Auf der Medienplattform des Chaos Computer Clubs findest du diverse Vorträge zum Thema Datenschutz, wie zum Beispiel:

  1. Eine Zusammenfassung darüber, was für Dinge uns heutzutage überwachen und was du dagegen tun kannst.
  2. Ein Workshop mit kleiner Einführung in Privatsphäre Features und Addons von Browser(n).
  3. Ein Vortrag über Logins und Passwörter und was man darüberwissen sollte.

[DE] Das Handbuch zur Digitalen Selbstverteidigung von der Digitalen Gesellschaft zeigt die wichtigsten Schritte auf, um deine Privatsphäre besser zu schützen und die Hoheit über deine Daten zurückzugewinnen.

[EN] Request access to your personal data collected by tech companies with a subject access request (SAR) through personaldata.io. This can give you a very comprehensive view of data practices at a company.

[DE FR IT] Entdecke diese Tipps für Eltern von der nationalen Plattform “Jugend und Medien”, wie Kinder und Jugendliche ihren Datenschutz verbessern können.

[DE] Auf dem Blog von GlobalSign findest du diverse Artikel mit Handlungsanweisungen für deinen Datenschutz, wie zum Beispiel:

  1. 5 Tipps für sicheres Online-Shopping
  2. Was ist Phishing und wie kann ich es verhindern?

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