Yes, you can definitely use Tor as a socks5 proxy. Never heard of it? Tor is a network that uses peer-to-peer connections to allow people securely surfing the web without leaving any trace. Originally developed by U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, now Tor is being used by millions of Internet users. When you start a Tor session, it also comes with a socks5 proxy at port 9150 on your computer. So you can easily use any application that supports socks5 proxy under Tor with a simple configuration. Remember that Tor application need to be opened the entire time. Again, the socks5 address for Tor proxy is : socks5://localhost:9150
Have you remember searching for something or browsing some products, and the next day Facebook recommends the same or similar type of products? Companies these days try pretty hard to track your every movement. Cookies is one of the main tracking panel. 1+ button, Like button, social button, … in general come with a tracking code that can track your behavior on the current website, and if, by accident (but very likely) you also logged in to Google, Facebook, …, these information will be linked to your Google, Facebook, … accounts. These information will be used to track, identify and ultimately, make money. If you fell comfortable about this, that’s completely fine. However, if you fell disturbing and disguising, here are some little tricks that can gain you a little privacy. Install AdBlock or AdBlockPlus. They are not the same, by the way. Disable third party cookies. On Safari, it’s located at Preferences -> Privacy and select “Allow from current website only”. On Chrome, it’s located at Settings -> Show advanced settings… -> Content settings… and check “Block third-party cookies and site data”. I don’t use any other browser, so I can’t tell where this option located, but it should be pretty easy to figure it out. Do-Not-Track option does not help at all, so don’t bother trying this. Hope this make you fell a little secure.
Normally I don’t care who owns what. However, when it come to spam email, it’s a completely different problem. I hate spam. Yes. I setup a specific domain to act as honeypot to catch spam. This week I received more than 3 emails from wigtypes.com under the email I submitted into beautyofnewyork.com. I don’t remember giving my email to wigtypes.com and I generated an unique email every time I submit to a website. Surprise? In their websites, there is no link to each other and they don’t claim they are the same company either. So who the hell give wigtypes.com the permission to spam me? They share the same address, same phone number and used to be in the same server. In my opinion, they are likely to be the same, or under the same owner. Some information: https://web.archive.org/web/20140826173318/http://myip.ms/info/whois/126.96.36.199/k/4212716814/website/wigtypes.com https://web.archive.org/web/20140826174529/http://www.telephoneactivity.com/516/307/1851.html
In my opinion, SSL should be enabled everywhere. HTTP was designed without security in mind. It was 1989, when Tim Berners-Lee first proposed the “WorldWideWeb” project. At that time, the most important thing is to deliver web content to internet users. Things has changed significantly in the last 10 years. Sniffing plain HTTP content is easier than ever. People care more and more about privacy, especially when Non Such Agency use complicated monitoring infrastructure to spy their own citizens. Google, Facebook, Twitter, banks and other important websites already switched to HTTPS completely. And few days ago, Google announced that they will take into account whether websites support HTTPS. In short, HTTPS will give you (slightly) advantage over plain HTTP. SSL certificate has been free to acquire for more than a year by StartSSL. And by mid-October, CloudFlare will also support SSL for free. Therefore, by mid-October, all my self-hosted sites will be completely SSL. Why not?
… after implementing some blocking features