Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Thursday, May 14, 2020 at 18:22

Easy privacy tips & tricks are here for Ubuntu Focal Fossa. You will find here simple, short, but powerful things in five sections such as start storing your username & password in a password manager and make sure your web browser is already private & secure. You can also do activities anonymously online by using Free Software based services simply accessible by browser such as Writeas mentioned below. Everything mentioned here is for beginners with further reading section at the end to learn more. Enjoy Ubuntu 20.04 safe and sound!

(There are password manager and default web browser with security and privacy protection behind on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS easy peasy to have and work with!)

[ Learn Ubuntu: Software Installation Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 ]
[ New technology: AppImage | Flatpak | Snap ]

1. Store Your Passwords

KeePassX - desktop application to store securely your passwords of logins and email accounts you can open anytime with password only you know. No forgetting any password or username anymore. Find it on Software Center.

(My password manager viewing my accounts with username and password I add over the time - many of them are important ones I often forgot if I don't use password manager)

How to use:
- create new database file (file format: .kdbx) and password to open it and save it to your folder
- to open the database, enter the password
- add new entry for example for your email account details
- add another entry for example for your computer password
- save changes before closing
- if you use multiple OS, make sure KeePassX is installed in all, and simply open the database file stored and no need to re-create new database

*) Alternatively, you can use the community continuation named KeePassXC. The C in its name stands for Community. It is also available on Focal Fossa.

2. Take Care of Webcam and Earphone

Cover your webcam so it will not capture you whenever you do not want to. Test your sound with and without earphone whether it works as expected. Why? Because technology like Jitsi, Riotim, Nextcloud Talk, Jami, or anything else which includes video call will automatically capture you at any time mostly when you are not ready. And because it is often reported that Ubuntu fails to produce sound in earphone exclusively when earphone is used but produce it in loud speaker instead. You will not want any of these two. For webcam cover, you can purchase the things or make it yourself.

(Example sliding webcam cover easy to find at store | image source: jpg)

3. Stay Anonymous

You can do activities only even together with other ones with these Free Software based services that respect your privacy. No real name, no home address, no phone number required to do these.

  • Writeas - you can publish text online without registration.
  • Riotim - you can have chat with everybody with text, voice, file sharing and video calls just by using web browser.
  • Etherpad - you can write text together with friends in real time in one place.
  • Guerilla Mail - you can register to any online service without worry of using your real, prestigious email address by using this kind of disposable (one-time use) email service. For starter, you can try free service from LinuxPizza - a member of Librehost Community.

(This is the new world, Riotim, which welcomes everybody to chat anonymously securely and in federated ways with features equal to Skype or WhatsApp)

4. Enable Security on Web Browser

HTTPS Everywhere and uBlock Origin are two must-have things on Mozilla Firefox browser. To install them, follow each link and click the blue Add to Firefox button on the Mozilla website. Once installed, you are sure that everywhere you browse all your connections are secured (encrypted) and free from ads or trackers.

(The 'HTTPS Origin' combo is a strong protection for privacy and security aside from other extensions such as Private Search Engine)

5. Enable DNS Encryption

The last thing is technical but it is strong to protect privacy. With DNSCrypt technology installed, you do not need VPN or Tor anymore to browse freely without censorship for all applications. As my personal opinion if there is a technical feature request I could ask to all operating systems in this world, it is to make DNS encrypted by default. To enable it, see 18.04's dnscrypt tutorial which is still applicable the same way to 20.04. Happy browsing!

(Visiting successfully in my country means I am using DNScrypt protection and on the bottom right the system says "dnscrypt enabled" indeed)

See Also

I believe you are also interested in user's privacy so I advise you to learn more here:

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.