Let's suppose that you really do want to be anonymous on the internet, so perhaps you have chosen to go with Linux, with a secure setup, ditching Windows and all the other data collection services from your hard drive, or at least found the right browser, maybe even gone with the tor-browser and at least be on your way to being less traceable.
Trust me, there is always some tiny bit of you that can be traced and/or tracked. But that doesn't mean you can't try to go further and adopt an online appearance to look like somebody else.
Let's start with the obvious issue...if you are using the same computer for your current 'real' life, for example work, shopping etc., then this won't really help! The ad spy agencies already know who you are, as does Google, Facebook, Apple and all the other criminal organisations that buy and sell your data to the highest bidder.
However, if you use a computer for anything else, such as research, for daily news, blogging etc., then you have options for activating a degree of invisibility or as I like to call it 'hiding in plain sight'.
Firstly, you need a new identity, this is pretty simple, just make up a name, attach an address and a telephone number etc. Then save that information and use it everywhere. If you have no idea what name to pick, you can use a name generator, for example:
Congratulations you are now..
Theun El Morabit
9269 SZ Feanwâlden
November 20, 1954
65 years old
Your telephone number we will generate later!
Now, of course, you will also need a new face, won't you ;)
None of these people exist! So you really can use this face or that one or that one because every time you refresh the page, the engine generates a new face! One that is randomized but that resembles a real person!
Congratulations again! Apart from a telephone number and email address you are all set!
Next, if you like to use services like Twitter or Signal or anything that requires cellphone or number registration, you can always use one of these services:
(if you need a USA based number)
(for a UK/or soon to be available international number)
(for a service based international number)
The best part is that you can pay using Bitcoin, Ethereum or even Monero (for even more privacy) and a bunch of other cryptocurrencies.
These can be used to register on services and sites that require telephone registrations like Twitter, Signal etc. Here again, try to avoid Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp and all the others with built-in spy agencies. Now remember that the setup you are creating is for your Laptop/Desktop, but could also work on your cellphone. The question now is what are you using your phone for? If it is private, business or anything else, you need to chose who you are on your cellphone. We have a bunch of chapters on cellphones and privacy setups that you can browse here:
Consider using Element (matrix) if you want to be even more private as it does not require you to provide a telephone number.
Also, ensure you have the right browser, or at least the right settings for your browser. I personally recommend the tor-browser, but it is up to your personal preference. Remember you are 'hiding in plain sight'!
One final step here, why not have your browser and other apps firejailed!
Go to the terminal CTRL+ALT+T
sudo apt-get install firejail
Or if you have it in your software center just download it there.
You can now start firefox, for example, with:
Alternatively, you can have a program always start in firejail by just clicking the icon. To force this, just enter:
sudo ln -s /usr/bin/firejail /usr/local/bin/<application>
As an example, if you want Signal Messenger to always start in firejail:
sudo ln -s /usr/bin/firejail /usr/local/bin/signal-desktop
Falkon browser would be:
sudo ln -s /usr/bin/firejail /usr/local/bin/falkon
Chapter 6.9 of the Privavcy Cookbook (bookmarked above) is dedicated to Firejail :-)
Last but not least, always remember that even if you only use your real address once, your real name or email can be traced again! And your fake name will be attached to your real one and your 'hiding in plain sight' days will be over...until you go again!
Stay safe and stay hidden, because even if you have nothing to hide, you surely also have nothing to share.
The Privacy Advocate