Archives - Privacy


Watch out for unemployment identity theft

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, some states have seen surges in fraudulent unemployment claims. It can be difficult to know if someone has claimed unemployment using your identity. Look out for notices from your state’s unemployment office or, if you are employed, your employer. If you are a victim of unemployment identity theft, report it to […]

Use OpenStreetMap for directions

OpenStreetMap is run by a nonprofit organization, and it’s updated by the very people who use it. Anyone can create an account and add pictures or other information to make location details more accurate. You do not need to log into your account to use the app, and there are no ads. Some limited data […]

Try Paranoid for your smart speakers

If you don’t want your smart speaker hearing your conversations, but you don’t want the hassle of consistently muting and unmuting it or using a voice remote, you can try Paranoid. Paranoid is a device that sits on the mute button of the smart speaker and only turns it off when it hears the wake […]

Block your address book on your Alexa device

If your Alexa device hears you incorrectly, it might send a text message or email you did not intend, or it might call someone you didn’t mean to call. Disable the address book sharing feature on your Alexa device to prevent this. To block your address book: Open Conversations in the Alexa app. Tap the […]

Lock the room when using Houseparty

Houseparty is a videoconferencing app that does not require a link to access a meeting. Instead, when you log into houseparty, you can see which of your friends are “in the house,” and join their conference without permission — unless their room is locked. You should keep your Houseparty room locked at all times that […]

Check privacy policies and uncheck boxes

Check the privacy policy before you submit your email address to a website. See if it allows the company to sell your email to others. You might decide not to submit your email address to websites that won’t protect it. When submitting your email address to a website, look for pre-checked boxes that sign you […]