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How to protect privacy online: 10 free apps

privacy online

online privacy

Who of us has not uploaded part of his life on the Internet, to the point of not being able to imagine living without it? In everyday life we ​​use different online services to which we entrust the security of ours sensitive data. Unfortunately, many of us do not realize that ours online privacy threatened and these data are not really safe. Much information and sensitive data are available to third-party companies able to view their content. They are the same companies that provide the online service but also the server managers.

Online privacy: 10 free apps

For most people, the problem of protecting online privacy is completely indifferent, or they completely ignore it. But sometimes it's better to be safe than sorry, knowing the methods for protect privacy online. We all have personal data such as credit card or bank account passwords, but also sensitive data that you want to keep secret. When we talk about encrypted data, we mean that these applications will help us make most of our online activities safer, ensuring privacy, protecting them from those who want to spy on them. Having said that, below we offer 10 free applications that will help you protect privacy online when you surf the internet.

Tails OS (Operating System)

Tails (The Amnesic Incognito Live System) built on the idea of ​​privacy and anonymity for the user. All that could be done and any tool that could be useful to your privacy was added to the operating system. The first interesting thing is that it is a real-time operating system, designed to be run not from the PC's internal drive but from a CD or USB flash drive, leaving absolutely no trace of your activity on the computer's hard drive.

The second interesting thing that every single Internet connection is transmitted through the Tor network, which means that your online activity will remain anonymous. Every app in Tails been configured to maintain privacy and secrecy. For example, e-mail and the messaging client include cryptographic tools. (Download from here)

Tails OS

Replicant (Operating System)

Replicant an Android-based mobile operating system that aims to replace every bit of proprietary software on the phone with free software. The problem with the operating systems that we normally find installed on Android smartphones is that they could have hidden access that could be exploited by manufacturers or anyone who wants to access our data. With free software, the source of the operating system can be viewed and corrected by anyone and not only by the manufacturer, thus allowing an awareness of what the system does while we use it and allowing us to discover any privacy problems and solve them.

Currently, Replicant is able to boot on most Samsung devices, especially the Galaxy S series and all the software including free software, ie without Google Apps like Gmail, Maps, Play Store, etc. It comes with its own App Store, F-Droid, which filled only with free, open source software. (Download from here)


Tor Browser (Web Browser)

Tor Browser a modified version of Firefox that implements the Tor protocol. We have already talked about this solution in a dedicated article that we invite you to read to learn more about the subject. (Download from here) (Article link)

Tor Browser

OwnCloud (Online Storage)

When you use an online storage provider like Dropbox or Google Drive, you are trusting these services because you entrust your sensitive data and put security at risk. There have been several cases where the security of the data held by these companies has been compromised. The best solution is to create your own cloud.

OwnCloud allows you to build a personal cloud, where you can control everything about it, from disk size to hardware. There is not a third party involved in data management, which means that the chances of someone peeking into your data less. You are solely responsible for privacy and data security. (Download from here)


BoxCryptor (Online Storage)

Although with some risks, there are still reasons to use a third-party online storage provider. easy, convenient and economical. In this case, there are ways to protect the data we have synchronized. The best way is to encrypt the data stored online, so that no one will be able to view the content except us.

BoxCryptor an app that allows you to easily encrypt files residing on online storage units. BoxCryptor runs on the main online storage providers and uses AES-256 and RSA encryption algorithms. The keys for decrypting the data are ours alone, so even the company that created BoxCryptor cannot decrypt the data. (Download from here)


ProtonMail (e-mail)

Most of us rely on e-mails for many activities of daily life and work. Most people prefer that e-mail messages are kept private, because some of them may contain sensitive information about work or our private life. While most major email providers have some sort of privacy tools to protect our emails, most of them have the option to read our email if they want.

ProtonMail a service currently in beta and an invitation must be requested to create an account, but promises to offer an easy way to keep emails safe and protected from any kind of external access. This app offers end-to-end encryption and people who do not have the key to decrypt them cannot access e-mails, not even ProtonMail itself. Multi-platform ProtonMail and encrypted and non-encrypted e-mails can be sent. (Download from here)



Wire a platform for collaboration between a work team or between friends. Teams of people or even collaborators of different projects working together can be in touch with each other without interruption. Wire takes care of security issues by providing end-to-end encryption. It is a platform made up of many different functions such as messaging, file sharing, voice calls and video services.

With Wire, your team becomes more productive. You can switch between group chats, file sharing, HD video calls and video conferences with one click, without ever leaving the security of Wire's end-to-end encryption.

You can open a free and personal account that offers the advantages of a secure and privacy-focused messaging app. Personal accounts can connect and communicate with Pro accounts.

  • Messages, calls, photos and files: end-to-end encrypted.
  • App for mobile, desktop and web devices.
  • No phone number required for registration.
  • No advertising, no user data sold to others.

(Download from here)

messages encrypted with Wire

Pidgin (Messaging)

Pidgin a versatile and multi-platform instant messaging client, which allows you to chat with many of the online chat services you're already using, like Facebook, so you can have all the chat sessions under one application. The free and open source application, so that the source code can be viewed and studied.

The main reason why this application is on the list of apps to protect online privacy, its ability to add Off-the-Record Messaging to the top of such protocols. For example, with Pidgin, you and your friends are able to have an encrypted conversation on Facebook, which means that no one except you and the recipient will have access to the messages, not even Facebook. (Download from here)

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<h3><span class=Linphone (Telephony)

If you want to have an Internet application on your phone that is secure and encrypted, immune to the possibility of being intercepted, linphone provides all this. Linphone is a free and open source application that allows you to make calls using a standard known as Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), which is an open protocol, unlike the one used by Skype which is closed.

In addition to the app, Linphone has a service where you can create your own SIP account to start using the application. The interesting thing about the SIP account that is not related to the application, and can be used by other smartphone applications that support the SIP protocol. (Download from here)

Linphone telephone operator

OnionShare (File sharing)

OnionShare a new command line based app written in Python and created by Micah Lee, who works for Glenn Greenwald's news site Intercept. If the name Glenn Greenwald does not tell you anything, the journalist who announced the NSA leaks. The application has a single purpose, that of allowing you to share files through the internet anonymously through Tor and protect privacy online.

It does this by using Tor's hidden services. When you share a file, the application will create a URL .onion difficult to guess, which can only be opened via a Tor Browser, ensuring the anonymity of the parties involved. To share files, you will have to send the URL .onion to the recipient. (Download from here).


We have completed the list of 10 Apps to protect online privacy. If you know others, you can report them in the comments.

On this topic of privacy, you may also be interested in the guide on how to navigate incognito on Chrome without leaving a trace.