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I make no secret that I do not like data collection practices, and personally I try to limit the information that corporations hold.
This, however, does not mean users shouldn’t enjoy the products and services that Google offers. Chrome OS provides a clean, user-friendly experience that has a number of benefits, and with a few tweaks, you can keep some of your data personal.Stop Syncing and Delete
The first thing to stop is syncing all your data to Google servers.
I understand the benefit, that by holding all your data in the cloud, it means you can change devices if they become damaged or stolen, but this is inherently less private.
2. Navigate to “People” and select Sync.
3. Uncheck “Sync everything” and ensure all options underneath Sync are off.
4. In the search box type “Forms,” and then select “Manage Passwords.”
5. Underneath “Manage Passwords,” make sure the toggle is turned off.
6. Repeat the same search and selection for the term “Autofill.”
7. Repeat the same search for, “Privacy.” You will find a few selections:
“Use a web service to help resolve navigation errors”
“Use a prediction service to help complete searches and URLs typed in the address bar or the app launcher search box”
“Use a prediction service to load pages more quickly”
“Automatically send some system information and page content to Google to help detect dangerous apps and sites”
“Automatically send diagnostic and usage data to Google”
“Use a web service to help resolve spelling errors”
Note: These settings also apply to the Chrome browser for all platforms, should users wish to extend their privacy practices.Use Another Search
This one sounds strange considering how deeply integrated Google services are on a Chromebook, but search is one of Google’s primary data collection tools. Switching to DuckDuckGo can help. DuckDuckGo is a search engine that claims to not track users and collect the bare minimum of information.
1. Select the Chrome menu and navigate to Settings.
2. Locate “Manage Search Engines,” and within the Form Fields for “Other search engines” type the following:
Add a new search engine: DuckDuckGoChange DNS
DNS.Watch is a DNS provider that promises not to track or log your queries.
1. Select the Chrome menu, then Settings, select Wi-Fi network to display network connections, then choose the active network. You’ll see the settings for the network.
2. Select the “Network” tab. Choose “Custom name servers,” and enter 184.108.40.206 for server 1 and 220.127.116.11 for server 2. Choose Disconnect. Then, select the network again (as before), and choose “Connect.”
Matt has worked in the tech industry for many years and is now a freelance writer. His experience is within Windows, Linux, Privacy and Android.
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You're reading How To Tighten Up Your Privacy On A Chromebook
If you own a Chromebook and have it connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your printer, adding a printer to your Chromebook is almost identical to adding one on any other computer.
Using the printer settings in your Chromebook’s settings menu, you can configure your printer so that you can print to it any time you like.
Table of ContentsHow to Add a Wi-Fi Printer to Your Chromebook
If you have a wireless printer connected to your network, adding that printer on your Chromebook is effortless. ChromeOS supports mostly all modern printer drivers.
Select the clock in the bottom-right corner of the window and select the gear icon to open your Chromebook settings. Select
Print and scan
in the left menu.
In the right pane, select the right arrow next to
A new window will open for you to add the new printer. All you need is the printer’s IP address (which you can get from your printer’s menu). Type a name for the printer, enter the IP address in the
field, and then select the
Note: Ensure Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) is selected in the Protocol drop-down menu for Wi-Fi network printing to work properly.
You’ll see your printer show up in your list of compatible printers on the Printers page. It will show up under Your saved printers and under Add printers to your profile.
If you have a newer printer with Wi-Fi functionality, it may show up under the second section. You can select Save to add that printer automatically rather than using the manual process above.
If you don’t see any new printer you purchase in the list at the bottom of the settings window, you can add it manually using the same process above by selecting the small plus icon to the right of Add printer.How to Add a USB Printer to Your Chromebook
If you’re using an older printer that requires a USB connection, you can still connect your Chromebook to that printer.
Plug the USB cable from your printer into your Chromebook’s USB port.
You’ll see a pop-up window to add a new printer. Select
Follow the wizard to step through adding the new printer.
If you don’t see a Wizard appear, you can go through the steps in the previous section to view available printers in the Settings menu and select the connected printer under the Add printers to your profile section.
Note: Whenever you print for the first time, if you don’t see the new printer’s name in the Destination field, select See more… and the printer should be listed in that window.How to Print From Your Chromebook
Once you’ve added your printer, you can print to it from any Chromebook app that supports printing.
With the document, image, or other media open that you want to print, just press
Ctrl + P
keyboard shortcut on the keyboard to open the Print menu. In that menu, select the
dropdown and choose
Select a destination
window, select the printer you want to print to.
Once you’ve selected the printer you want to print to, select the
button to send that print job to your selected printer.
You should see the document or image printed on the printer you’ve selected on your network.Printing From a Google Chromebook
As you can see, printing from a Chromebook is similar to printing from any other computer. Just open the Chromebook Settings menu and go through the process to add the new printer using the simple menus.
Also, if you want to print from your Chromebook outside your home, away from your Wi-Fi network, Google Cloud Print is the perfect solution.
Ways To Set Up Camera Privacy Settings On Windows 10
The built-in camera in laptops or tablets
USB Webcam for PCs
By saying that it is necessary to configure your camera before such events. In this how-to blog, we will see how we can fix the camera privacy in windows 10 so that we can have uninterrupted sessions.
Also Read: Can Security Cameras be Hacked? How to Protect Yourself?Fix camera configuration in Windows 10
We will have to follow these steps to configure the camera: –
Now select the Privacy tab and under it the Camera which will be displayed on the left panel.
Here the First things under the Camera tab, we will have to check the” Camera access for the device is on”. It is set on by default globally on Windows 10 devices. If it is not turned on, then you are required to turn it on because this setting applies to the entire
In the next step, you will have to check the “Allow apps to access your camera”. This setting includes both the desktop store apps and Microsoft store apps. If this is not on, then turn it on because if it is off then the camera will not work.
Now you will have to check the section called “Choose which Microsoft Store apps can access your camera”. From the given list, you can allow camera access to the apps you want. The settings of these sections are solely for the Microsoft Store apps.
If the camera is disabled for this section, then it will not affect other third-party apps. The camera will work normally for them.
If you want to use any of the Microsoft Store apps, then you can turn the camera on in this section to enjoy the feature.
Now in the last, you will see the section called “Allow desktop apps to access your camera”. If you have downloaded any third-party desktop app which requires camera access, then those all apps will be listed here.
NOTE: Only the desktop apps are listed here and not the apps which are used in browsers.
This switch should always be on if you want to use the system for teleconferencing via Zoom, Google Chrome, etc. If you do not want any app to use the camera feature, then you can simply strike it out.
NOTE: You cannot give camera access to individual apps in this section.Best ways of using a camera: –
In-built cameras or a USB camera, both are very useful in a personal and professional way. But we will have to be very strict in terms of our privacy because of the increasing cyber crimes these days. As per the study of WizCase in September 2023, there were approx 15000 webcams that were accessible.
We must follow some steps to avoid such a situation where cyber attackers can misuse our cameras.
If you are using a USB webcam, then always unplug it after use.
Always put a security cover on the webcam when not in use.
Always allow limited apps to access the camera.
Camera Not Working on Mac: Possible Fixes
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Adobe’s Photoshop Camera App Review
How to use DSLR or Mirrorless camera as a WebcamQuick Reaction:
About the author
Read Next: How to update your Facebook privacy settings
These days, it makes a lot of sense to look after the data stored on your smartphone and fortunately there are plenty of handy tools available within the Android ecosystem to help keep your data private.Use the lockscreen Device Encryption
Applying a password to your phone’s lockscreen is a start, but particularly nefarious and skilled criminals may still be able to access your files, given enough time and access to say a stolen smartphone. Device encryption can be used put all of your files into a format that cannot be understood without first decrypting them with the proper key, or a password that only you will know.
How to encrypt your Android device
GuidesFind my device Picking tougher passwords
Along with just plain out not using a lockscreen, weak or commonly used passwords are the biggest no-no if you’re looking to keep your data secure, both on device and online. Lists of the most commonly used passwords are published rather frequently and if your password of choice appears on that list, you should really change it. Disappointingly, the most common passwords rarely change, so here are some to definitely steer clear of:
1234567 (and other basic counting variations)
As a general rule, a mix of cases, numbers, and special characters (where allowed) makes for the most secure password, and the longer the better too. 8 characters is really the bare minimum recommended, but moving up to 12 or 16 makes them so much harder to guess.
10 best password manager apps for Android
App listsVPN (Virtual Private Networks)
So far, we have mostly dealt with offline security and preventing thieves from cracking into your private files. However, it’s also possible for the bad guys out there to track exactly what you’re looking at and downloading online.
The best Android VPN apps to recover your online privacy and bypass geo blocks
App listsEncrypted Communications
While VPNs can offer some degree of privacy, the only sure fire way to know that no unwanted eyes are snooping in on your communications is to use encryption. Several Android apps have incorporated encryption into their messaging services to varying degrees, with uses ranging from simple text messages to video calls.Understanding App Permissions
Now that we’ve dealt with general data privacy, the other major snoopers in the mobile space are actually the apps that we all download. Of course, you should always install software only from trusted sources, such as the Play Store, but even then some apps, especially the free ones, exist to turn your data into profits. Ad supported apps are one thing, but digging through your files is another.Anti-virus apps
While the Play Store does a very good job at screening out malicious applications, additional security can be had with the range of anti-virus apps available from the store. This isn’t really necessary for most users, but if you’re big on side-loading apps from other developer websites, then anti-virus is certainly worth looking into.
15 best antivirus apps and best anti-malware apps for Android
App listsWrap up
Read Next: What are Android app permissions and how to use them if you’re not a developer
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Your iPhone is home not just to all your favorite apps, but also to important and irreplaceable data and personalized settings. Should your phone ever stop working properly or even go missing, you want to be able to restore all your apps, data, and settings, either to the same phone or to a different one. And you want that process to be as quick and easy as possible. That’s why backing up your iPhone periodically is crucial.
The process of learning how to back up your iPhone is fairly straightforward, However, you can choose from a few different backup methods, such as backing up to iCloud or to your computer and backing up manually or automatically. Here’s how it all works:
Want to protect your phone as well as your data? Check out our list of the best iPhone 13 cases for 2023.iCloud vs local backup Backing up to iCloud
Choosing iCloud stores your backup in Apple’s cloud-based service. With this method, you run the backup directly from your phone, so you can do this at home or on the go. As your backup is saved in the cloud, you’re also able to restore it from any computer. On the downside, Apple limits the amount of free iCloud storage to only 5GB. If your phone needs more space for backups (and it likely will), you’ll have to shell out money for a paid iCloud subscription—50GB of storage for $0.99 cents a month, 200GB for $2.99 a month, or 2TB for $9.99 a month.
Backing up your phone to iCloud includes the following data and files:
Apple Watch backups
Home screen and app organization
iMessage texts, SMS messages, and MMS messages
Photos and videos
Purchase history from Apple services, such as your music, movies, TV shows, apps, and books.
Visual Voicemail password (requires the SIM card in use during the backup)
An iCloud backup excludes the following items:
Data already being synced and stored in iCloud, including Contacts, Calendars, Notes, Photos, iMessages, SMS and MMS messages, Voice Memos, and Health data.
Data stored in other cloud services, such as Gmail email.
Apple Mail data.
Apple Pay information and settings.
Face ID or Touch ID settings.
iCloud Music Library and App Store content.Backing up locally
Choosing a local backup stores the backed-up data on your computer’s hard drive. As such, storage shouldn’t be an issue as long as you have enough disk space. You run the local backup from iTunes in Windows or from Finder on a Mac. But you risk losing the backup should your PC ever crash or become inaccessible. Backing up to your computer includes almost all your phone’s data and settings. It excludes the following items:
Content from the iTunes and App Stores.
PDFs downloaded directly via Apple Books.
Content synced from Finder or iTunes, such as imported MP3s or CDs, videos, books, and photos.
Data already stored in iCloud.
Face ID or Touch ID settings.
Apple Pay information and settings.
Apple Mail data.
Activity, Health, and Keychain data (if the backup is not password protected).
Of course, you can run separate backups using iCloud and your local computer. You may want to rely on an iCloud backup if you’re traveling or away from your computer. You might then supplement the iCloud backup with a local backup whenever you’re in front of your PC.Manual vs automatic backup
Whether you use iTunes, Finder, or your iPhone directly, you can run a backup manually or set it to run automatically. The two aren’t exclusive, as you can create an automatic backup and still run a manual one when needed, for example, before you make any major changes on your phone. Once set, an automatic backup revs up when your iPhone is connected to a power source, is using Wi-Fi or cellular, and is locked.Using a password
Securing your backups with a password not only protects the data but allows you to back up certain types of information that normally would be excluded. A password-protected, or encrypted backup, includes saved passwords, Wi-Fi settings, your website browsing history, health data, and call history. Backups to iCloud are automatically encrypted. To encrypt a local backup to your computer, you’ll have to create and apply a password. All local backups are then encrypted from that point on.Back up in Windows with iTunes
To set up an automatic and local backup from iTunes, select This Computer in the Automatically Back Up section. The next time your iPhone is connected and locked, and you open iTunes, the backup will occur automatically. The Latest Backups section shows the date and time of the last backup.
Lance WhitneyBack up on your Mac with Finder
With the introduction of macOS Catalina in 2023, Apple replaced iTunes with dedicated apps for specific content, such as Apple Music, Apple Books, and Apple Podcasts. Those of you still running an older version of macOS can use iTunes to back up your iPhone just as on a Windows PC. But if your Mac has macOS Catalina or higher, you instead use Finder for your phone backups. The process in Finder is almost the same as in iTunes.
Lance WhitneyBack up to iCloud from your iPhone
You don’t even need your computer or iTunes or Finder to back up your iPhone to iCloud as you can do it directly from the phone itself. And you’d use this method to back up your phone manually or automatically. On your iPhone, go to Settings and tap your name at the top. From your Apple ID screen, tap the setting for iCloud.
First, this screen shows you how much space is used up in iCloud so you can determine if you need to upgrade to a paid subscription. If you’re running low on space, tap the option for Manage Storage. At the next screen, tap the option for Change Storage Plan. Now choose the plan you want to purchase.
Return to the previous iCloud screen and tap the setting for iCloud Backup. Turn on the switch for iCloud Backup. Your phone will now be backed up automatically when the phone is connected to power and locked. If you want the backup to run even over a cellular connection, turn on the switch for Back Up Over Cellular. To perform a manual backup at any time, tap the option for Back Up Now.
Lance WhitneyRestore your phone
Now, let’s say your phone isn’t working right and you want to recover it from a backup, or you’ve had to jump ship to a different phone and need to restore all your data and settings. The process will vary depending on how and where you backed up your phone and its current state.
If your iPhone isn’t accessible or you want to restore your backup to a new phone, at some point in the setup process you’ll see a screen named Apps & Data asking how you want to restore your apps and data to the phone. To restore from an online backup, choose the option for Restore from iCloud Backup. Sign into your iCloud account with your Apple ID and password. A verification code is then sent to one of your other devices, such as an iPad or Mac. You’re asked which backup you want to restore. Choose the latest one. Allow the iCloud restore to run.
Learn how to set up Touch ID on a MacBook or Magic Keyboard, enroll your fingerprints in the system, and use it to quickly unlock your computer, make purchases on websites with Apple Pay, and much more.
Since October 2024, Touch ID has been available on MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. The Touch ID doubles as the Power button, too. Besides that, you can get the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and use it on any Apple silicon Mac like Mac mini, Mac Studio, iMac, etc.
What you can do with Touch ID on your Mac
Unlock your Mac
Authorize Apple Pay purchases on the web
Make purchases in App and iTunes stores
Unlock certain System Preferences panes that require a password
Open password-protected notes in the Notes app
Access the Passwords section in Safari preferences
Use fast user switching
Authenticate compatible third-party apps, like 1Password
Note: While you can press and hold down the Touch ID button for a few seconds to put the Mac to sleep, Apple recommends choosing Sleep from the Apple menu.
macOS may ask you to enter your account password instead of using Touch ID:
If you’ve just restarted your Mac
If you’ve logged out of your user account
If your fingerprint isn’t recognized five times in a row
If you haven’t unlocked your Mac in more than 48 hours
If you’ve just enrolled or deleted fingerprints
So, just how secure is Touch ID on the Mac?
Touch ID and your security
Touch ID on the Mac provides the same strong security and privacy that iOS users have grown accustomed to. That’s because your Mac comes with a special chip that has the so-called Secure Enclave, which keeps mathematical representations of your saved prints, as well as Apple Pay tokens, safely encrypted. All communications between the Touch ID sensor and the rest of the system go through that chip.
The main processor, the operating system, and any first or third-party apps cannot access the Touch ID sensor directly. All they get from the Touch ID subsystem is a simple confirmation upon a successful match. Apple does not save your fingerprints into the cloud, nor does it synchronize saved prints between devices via iCloud.
How to set up Touch ID on Mac
While setting up your new or erased Mac, you’re asked if you would like to use Touch ID. This is true even when you set up your Mac mini, Mac Studio, or iMac using the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID.
However, if you didn’t set up Touch ID then or want to add more fingerprints, follow these easy instructions:
Launch System Settings on your Mac.
Select Touch ID & Password from the left side.
Enter your Mac’s password and hit Unlock.
Now, repeatedly place (not press) and lift your finger on the Touch ID sensor of your MacBook or Magic Keyboard until all the patterns are filled with red-pink lines. Make small adjustments to the position of your finger each time so that the system captures the edges of your print.
You can now unlock your Mac using your fingerprint and do everything else that Touch ID supports.
You can register up to three fingerprints with Touch ID on your Mac versus five on your iPhone or iPad.
What to do after setting up Touch ID
You can select to use Touch ID for:
Unlocking your Mac: Bypass typing your Mac account’s password on the login screen and unlock the computer with your fingerprint.
Apple Pay: Use your fingerprint to make purchases with Apple Pay.
iTunes, App Store, and Apple Books: Use Touch ID to authorize purchases made on the Mac App Store, iTunes Store, and Books Store.
Autofill passwords: Confirm using Touch ID to fill saved passwords from iCloud Keychain.
User switching: If you have created multiple users for your Mac, you can switch between them using Touch ID.
Like with your iPhone and iPad, macOS lets you name any saved fingerprint (i.e., Middle Finger, Right Thumb, and so forth) so that it’s easier to identify in the list. However, you cannot place your finger on the Touch ID sensor to have System Settings highlight a matched print in the list, as you can on iOS.
Keep in mind that you may be asked to enter your administrative password if you’ve made changes to the fingerprints that you’ve enrolled in Touch ID.
Using Touch ID on Mac
For unlocking and user switching
Touch ID can save you from typing your account password on the Login screen.
After the initial password-based login, you can authenticate with Touch ID instead of your password. As mentioned in the opening section of this article, Touch ID can be used to open locked System Settings features, the Passwords section in Safari preferences, and any password-protected notes in the Notes app.
And if your computer is set up for multiple users and each user account has Touch ID set up, you can use the fingerprint sensor to quickly switch to any logged-in user accounts via the Fast User Switching feature.
On the App Store and iTunes Store
For security reasons, your Mac may ask you to enter your password on your first store purchase or if you’ve made changes to the fingerprints that you’ve enrolled in Touch ID.
Related: How to download apps on iPhone without Apple ID password, Face ID, or Touch ID authentication
For Apple Pay on websites in Safari
Authorize your purchase by placing one of the registered fingers on the Touch ID sensor when a prompt appears on the Touch Bar. A check mark followed by “Done” appears when the purchase is completed.
Your bank may only display the transactions made from your computer, or you might see all transactions made from your credit or debit card account, including those made from all Apple Pay devices and your plastic cards.
Keep in mind that you might see different transaction amounts from locations such as restaurants, gas service stations, hotels, and car rental companies because some banks provide only initial authorization amounts to Wallet.
Touch ID troubleshooting tips
Your Mac’s fingerprint sensor does not work well with wet or oily fingers because moisture, lotions, sweat, oils, cuts, or dry skin might affect fingerprint recognition. Due to these technological restrictions, you’re likely to experience temporary hiccups with Touch ID after activities like exercising, showering, swimming, or cooking, including any other conditions or changes that affect your fingerprint.
You can clean your Mac’s Touch ID sensor the same way you would clean the display: either use a microfiber cloth to remove finger oils and residue or dampen a soft, lint-free cloth with water only, then use it to clean the Touch ID sensor.
Shut down your Mac and unplug the power adaptor before cleaning the sensor.
Related: How to fix Touch ID not working on iPhone, iPad, and Mac
Delete enrolled fingerprints on Mac
As mentioned, your Mac can remember up to three different fingerprints. You can easily remove one of the enrolled fingerprints via these steps:
Enter Mac’s password and hit Unlock.
To use this fingerprint later, you’ll need to add it again there.
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