For a long time, I had the idea that I wanted to create a manual online, sharing all the knowledge and tips that I have learned, been given, worked out for myself and generally accumulated that allow us to live, work, learn, share in complete privacy at a time when privacy is under increasingly greater threat on so many fronts.

So I started The Privacy Cookbook, a 'go-to do-it-yourself' guide to understanding the pitfalls of the internet and some practical advice how to reduce, if not eliminate, risk when there. It is 'open-source'...a resource for the world, please feel free to share it with friends, family, colleagues and any groups or individuals you think might be interested. We all complain about 'Big Tech' a lot, this guide is a small step towards rolling back their intrusiveness.

I've never claimed to have all the answers, and ask you to share any insights that you want to pass on or correct any oversights or errors on my part. This is, and always will be, a 'work in progress' but one, I hope you'll agree, is an essential handbook for modern living!

You can find me via the site or Mastodon.  

Stay safe, stay secure.

The Privacy Advocate - January 2022

Index - 121 articles, entries & updates

Chapter 1 - Google (7)

Chapter 2 - Domain Name System (DNS) (8)

Chapter 3 - Ad & Bad Traffic (9)

Chapter 4 - Virtual Personal Networks (VPNs) (7)

Chapter 5 - Cellphone Security (24)

Chapter 6 - PCs, Desk & Laptops (16)

Chapter 7 - Social Media (8)

Chapter 8 - Home Office Apps (7)

Chapter 9 - Analytics (2)

Chapter 10 - Identity Preservation (6)

Chapter 11 - Smart Home (2)

Chapter 12 - Decentralized Marketplaces (3)

Chapter 13 - Search Engines (1)

Chapter 14 - Programming (1)

Chapter 15 - Keeping Kids Secure (3)

Chapter 16 - Gaming (1)

Chapter 17 - Decentralize It Yourself (DIY) (3)

Chapter 18 - The One with the Pi (7)

Chapter 19 - The one with the Apple (3)

Chapter 20 - Samsung (The Galaxy Guide) (2)

Chapter 21 - Email (1)

Chapter 1 - Google

1.0 Google! Google!! GTF!!! - first published October 23rd 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1 – Google! Google!! GTF!!!
Today we launch the Privacy Cookbook on Our primary objective is to understand the trackers around you i.e. thoseinvading your privacy and how to eliminate, or at least restrict them, as manyas possible. We will also run a series of complimentary articles surrounding standalo…

1.1 Google's AMPs - first published on January 2nd 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.1 - Google & their AMPs
As we all know, not many things stand still forever, so as part of ourcontinuing commitment to help you take back your privacy we will be circlingback to update and add to The Privacy we publish a newsub-section from Chapter 1 on Google........and next week we will return w…

1.2 No Google, No YouTube - first published on July 24th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.2 - No Google, No YouTube
> ( I had actually planned to start out on an entirely new chapter featuringcoreboot and how to buy and customize your own hardware to make it reallyprivate. However, this is really deep so I will take an extra week of researchand material gathering and I know it will be worth the wait ).So toda…

1.3 No more backrubs - first published on September 4th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.3 - - Google - No more backrubs
The first entry in the Privacy Cookbook was about removing Google from yourworld! About how to replace Google services and how to enjoy life without beingwatched, well at least not by Google. De-Google your life!> If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t bed…

1.4 FOSS - first published on December 18th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.4 Google - FOSS free open-source software
When I started the Privacy Cookbook back in October 2019 my first take was onGoogle. Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1 – Google! Google!! GTF!!!Today we launch thePrivacy Cookbook on Our primary objective is to understandthe trackers around you i.e. thoseinvading your privacy and …

1.5 - FOSS frontends - first published August 13th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.5 - Google - FOSS frontends
About 8 months ago, we published Chapter 1.4 of the Privacy Cookbook coveringFOSS to replace Google apps and services. Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.4 Google - FOSS free open-source softwareWhen Istarted the Privacy Cookbook back in October 2019 my first take was onGoogle.Privacy Cookbook - Chap…

1.6 (De)Google Organic Maps - first published January 14th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 1.6 - (De)Google - Organic Maps - #PrivacyCookbook - Chap. 1.6 - (De)Google - #organicmaps Alternatives to G-maps #osmand #openstreetmaps #google #degoogle

Chapter 2 - Domain Name System (DNS)

2.0 DNS - first published on November 22nd 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2 – Protecting your DNS
We promised you that within this cookbook we will go deeper into the rabbithole....well, here we go and in this chapter let’s start with something simple!DNS! Most people are not aware what DNS is or what it does.
The Domain Name System(DNS) is one of the foundations of the internet, yet most p…

2.1 NextDNS - first published on November 24th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2.1 - DNS - nextDNS
NextDNS - easy adblocking with DoT and DoH On paper, nextDNS would appear to bethe Holy Grail when it comes to DNS services, but let’s not get carried away ;) ​nextDNS is basically a DNS service that has an “integrated pi-hole” to thecloud.They use their own proprietary software, so it is not ac…

2.1.1 NextDNS (revised) - first published on October 2nd 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2.1.1 - DNS - NextDNS (revised)
Almost a year ago we published a Privacy Cookbook chapter about NextDNS. Theyhave improved, we have used it on our phone and even the routers so it deservesan update. NextDNS is easy to set up and works on every device regardless, Linux, Mac,Windows, iOS or Android. And the best of all is that y…

2.2 DNSCloak - first published on November 26th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2.2 - DNS - DNSCloak
DNSCloak is like NextDNS and is an app which runs as a VPN protocol (but only oniOS). It is actually not a VPN as such but a connection for your DNS resolver.DNSCloak lets you select a DoH or DNSCrypt connection to many services that arelisted with a description, location etc.Some of these DNS …

2.3 - RethinkDNS - first published May 28th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 2.3 - DNS - RethinkDNS
If you follow the Privacy Cookbook (and you’ll realize thatboth keep mentioning DNS. It is in my opinion one of the most important thingsyou need to set up, regardless of if its browser or system wide. On iOS andAndroid it is even more important to combine it with ad and spyw…

2.4 - Best DNS option of 2021

Privacy Cookbook — Ch 2.4 - Domain Name System, best of 2021 - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 2.4 - Domain Name System (DNS) - The best of 2021 #privacy #decloudus #mullvad #nextdns #adguard rethinkdns

2.5 - DeCloudUs

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2.5 - DNS - Decloudus DNS - #Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 2.5 - Domain Name System (DNS) - #Decloudus #google new secure, private, open-source, no-logs DNS resolver

2.6 3 approaches to DNS

Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 2.6 — DNS - 3 approaches to DNS - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 2.6 — Domain Name System (DNS) - Three mobile approaches to DNS step by step guide #privacy #DNS #VPN

Chapter 3 - Ad & Bad Traffic

3.0 Blocking & Filtering - first published on November 28th 2019, updated July 31st 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3 - Ad and Bad Traffic - Filtering
​The internet is one scary place. Most people wouldn’t know that as they go totheir favourite website that they have no idea what else is connecting to theirdevice. I have a crazy example: my Samsung Note 10 had most of the requestedconnections coming all day from and from…

3.0.1 Ad & Bad Traffic (the new list) - first published on March 3rd 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.0.1 - Ad & Bad Traffic (the new list)
Over the years I’ve made the point on how important DNS is and that you canblock, with a setup like AdGuardHome or Pi-hole via DNS, ads and domains thatare spying on or monitoring you. I believe we created a great linked listpreviously but I’m feeling the need to renew the list of good ad blocker…

3.1 Pi-hole - first published on November 30th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.1 - Ad & Bad Traffic - (put it in your..) Pi-hole
Today we’re following up on ad and bad-blockers with a supplemental section onthe Pi-hole! In the last entry of the Privacy Cookbook we talked about hostfiles. They’reeasy to compile and install on Windows, MacOS and Linux and you can use them aswell with DNSCloak on iOS. However, there are be…

3.2 AdGuard Home - first published on December 2nd 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.2 - Ad & Bad Traffic - AdGuard Home
AdGuard Home is the next step up when it comes to blocking ads, trackers and allthe other nasty BS what haunts the interwebs! We have nextDNS [/privacy-cookbook-chapter-2-1-nextdns/] covered as a possiblecloud solution, we have an in-house solution with Pi-hole[/privacy-cookbook-chapter-3-1-put-…

3.3 uBlock Origin - first published on December 4th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.3 - Ad & Bad Traffic - uBlock Origin
Today we’re going to talk about uBlock Origin and if you’ve followed the previous chapters on ad-blocking articles here is a little extra informationfor you. Even if you are using either of the two ad blocking apps (AdGuard Homeor Pi-Hole) please use uBlock Origin[…

3.4 Browser Security - first published on December 12th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.4 - Browser Security
Today’s Privacy Cookbook is all about browser security. Let’s start with Chrome or Chromium! If it is your main browser, do the following.....use your browser to go to, to download the latest Firefox and after doing thatdelete Chrome! Congrats you have fixed the first …

3.5 Browser Security update - beyond Firefox  - first published on July 3rd 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.5 - Firefox browser security update
Today’s Privacy Cookbook entry takes us back to browsers For reasons of privacy, I have long been a Firefox user and I’ve even publisheda chapter on how to make Firefox a better, more privacy focused browser. Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 3.4 - Browser SecurityToday’s Privacy Cookbook isallabout b…

3.5.1 - LibreWolf - first published June

Privacy Cookbook 3.5.1 Ad/Bad Traffic Post Firefox!LibreWolf
Over a year ago, we put out a Privacy Cookbook section entitled Beyond Firefox.But let’s be honest, the browser is the tool we all do most with and sadly mostpeople use Chrome, which makes the entire concept of privacy go out the“Windows”. Yes, I just did that! But let’s also be frank here...w…

3.6 - iCloud + Privacy Relay - first published August 6th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 3.6 Ad Bad Traffic iCloud+ Privacy Relay
With iOS 15 Apple is rolling out their Privacy Relay and iCloud+. The bigquestions are what is it and how much, if any, privacy can be given back to theuser. At first read, Privacy Relay sounds a little like a VPN or even like TOR. So first things first, Privacy Relay is not an VPN. A VPN, is a …

X.X Special edition - Join the anti-establishment Mozilla vs the better way - or go UNFCK yourself! - first published on October 9th 2020

Privacy Cookbook the anti-establishment Mozilla or go UNFCK yourself!
Your chance to join the anti-establishment Mozilla vs the better way in thisspecial edition of the Privacy Cookbook, which is published every Friday, hereon Mozilla has started a campaign about how to UNFCK the internet. As much as thissounds like a great idea and has an hono…

Chapter 4 - Virtual Personal Networks (VPNs)

4.0 VPNs - first published on December 8th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4 - VPN
Ok,,,,,so you have seen Mr.Robot, or read the news or maybe just developed acommon sense that when you are on a public WiFi, that this is potentially a veryserious treat to your privacy whether it be your local Starbucks, or an AirportWiFi, wherever...... You can be spied upon by others on the n…

4.1 Providers - first published on December 10th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4.1 - VPN - Providers
Be aware.....using a VPN is not without risks and you need to appreciate what itwill and what it won’t do for you. It will not keep your browser history secret, it will not provide security fornon-secure (HTTP) traffic, it will not provide anonymity. However, if what you are after is to mask you…

4.2 Shadowsocks - first published on December 13th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4.2 - VPN - An Outline of Shadowsocks(-ing)
Since the inception of the Great Firewall of China (GFW), people there haveneeded to bypass that restriction in order to access many of the Internets’ mostpopular sites and apps. VPNs are commonly used to access blocked content and services, however, in 2012,for a variety of reasons, a developer…

4.3 OpenVPN & PiHole - first published on December 16th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4.3 - VPN - OpenVPN+Pi.hole
Today we have a look on how to install OpenVPN+Pi.hole on a digitalocean.Remember it is best if you can pay with crypto but unfortunately there are notmany good crypto powered solutions out there! Hetzner is great and gives waymore traffic than digitalocean, but they ask for an ID even after paym…

4.4 Algo VPN - first published on December 19th 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4.4 - VPN - Algo VPN (WireGuard and IKEv2)
We promised you an even easier solution than we proposed in Chapter 4.3(OPENVPN) so today we cover a setup that allows IKEv2 with strong encrypto(AES-GCM, SHA2 and P-256), and WireGuard with a built-in ad and trackingblocker! This solution is called Algo VPN!…

4.5 Multiple big solutions - first published on December 23rd 2019

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 4.5 - VPN - multiple big solutions
Lets be honest, Algo, which we covered in the last chapter of the PrivacyCookbook, is probably the best and easiest solution to get your own VPNinstalled, up and running. However that doesn’t mean there aren’t othersolutions that are only a click or a few lines of script away!Some are provide…

4.6 The Onion - first published on May 1st 2020

TOR Network the onion router
I have previously pointed out in the Privacy Cookbook that by using a VPN itwill be possible (and enjoyable) to watch the Bundesliga (post C-19) or NetflixUSA when you are somewhere else in the world, but it is still a single point offailure when it comes to privacy. Sure it encrypts your browsin…

Chapter 5 - Cellphone Security

5.0 Metadata - first published on January 9th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5 - Cellphone Security - Metadata
Welcome to Chapter 5 of the Privacy Cookbook, and since you’ve made it this far,or you are just tuning in, it probably indicates that you are someone who reallycares about their privacy! And so you should, so welcome and let’s now take alook at cellphone security starting with the dreaded metada…

5.1 iOS - first published on January 12th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.1 - Cellphone Security - iOS
Before we dig deeper into Android and other phone manufacturers, let’s get iOSout of the way. The newest iOS has a chip which submits your location to Apple every time youswitch off your phone.even if you have location services on or off! And it willpinpoint your whereabouts even if you are usi…

5.2 Samsung - first published on January 15th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.2 - Cellphone Security - Samsung
After covering iOS in our last entry, we are focusing on Android and mostspecifically on Samsung devices...which could be a little tricky! Let us start by stating that we think that Samsung is awesome! if you have a topof the line device like the Note 10 or the S10 series, then you have not only…

5.3 Android - first published on January 18th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.3 - Cellphone Security - Android
Android is one of the greatest tracking tools in the world. Google (the do good company that has more evil than the devil itself) isembedded deeply into Android and so probably knows more about than your ownmother does. It starts when you turn on your cellphone and you get invited to create a …

5.4 root & custom ROM - first published on January 21st 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.4 - Cellphone Security - root and custom ROM
Having previously covered Samsung[/privacy-cookbook-chapter-5-2-cellphone-security-samsung/] specific phones and stock android [/privacy-cookbook-chapter-5-3-cellphone-security-android/], let’sgo the extra mile and talk now about rooted phones. On XDA developers forum […

5.5 Apple - first published on January 24th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.5 - Cellphone Security - A Rotten Apple and a Cinderella Story
I think we can all agree that if you want a cellphone that is 100% private thendon’t use a cellphone! Cellphones will (very nearly) always be tracking devices! Simple as that! Nowthe question is what do you really need it for? Is it social media? And if so,is it something like Twitter? If yes, …

5.6 Your daily drive (software) - first published on January 29th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.6 - Cellphone Security - Your daily drive (software)
If you’ve been following this last chapter then you will realize that we try toget you away from both Google and iCloud services as much as possible. Thatsaid, you still need some other ways to stay organized but with privacy andsecurity. Let’s now dig into what to use to have your phone experie…

5.7 Email encryption - first published on January 31st 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.7 - Cellphone Security - Email encryption
Today we would like to introduce you to GnuPG encryption on Android forFairEmail and within mail on iOS. Before we do this I’d like to mention you canuse TutaNota or ProtonMail (sadly on Android you won’t get push notifications,as the app relays on Google Services) which both offer email encry…

5.8 Battlefixes for non-rooted smartphones - first published on February 5th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.8 - Cellphone Security - Battlefixes for non-rooted smartphones
We’ve reached the final section of Chapter 5 of the Privacy Cookbook which dealswith one final area (and it is quite significant) namely some guidance,suggestions and recommendations for those who do not root their devices andprefer/chose to use them as delivered. Firstly and very frankly, we i…

5.8.1 f-droid - first published on April 17th 2020 - privacy cookbook - chapter 5.8.1- f-droid
The beauty of having the Privacy Cookbook online here is that as it grows, I canreturn to earlier chapters and add additional sections or provide updates,corrections/amendments and new information or developments. The only constantis change and given the rate of change, it is great to have a liv…

5.8.2 - critical apps blocks - first published June 4th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 5.8.2 Cell Security critical apps blocks
I recently shared how to ADB disable apps and bloatware. Today we go the extramile and block access to location, clipboard and co for apps that shouldn’t havethese permissions. First hop over to F-Droid and download AppOpsX, yes, the app is 2 years old, butstill does the trick! Go to Settings …

5.8.3 - AdGuard - first published June 11th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chap 5.8.3 - Cellphone Security AdGuard
If you follow the Privacy Cookbook, you’ll know I am a big fan of encryptingyour DNS. Combine that with a good blocklist (on the DNS or device) and you areahead of the pack! AdGuard was always one of the first recommendations, as it works via AdGuardHome(from home, just like Pi-Hole) but also i…

5.8.4 - AdAway Firewall - first published June 11th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 5.8.4 - Cell Security - AdAway Firewall
AdAway has been around for as long as I can tremember. It was always one of thefirst apps I installed when I had a rooted device. However, when it comes to‘non-rooted’ I did mention multiple great options in the past. You have plentyof choices with RethinkDNS, AdGuard, NetGuard and the like. …

5.8.5 - browsers & add-ons - first published September 3rd 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 5.8.5 phone security browsers & add-ons
When it comes to mobile browsers, most people go with the pre-installed version.In iOS that is Safari and in Android usually Chrome. That is, of course, thewrong approach when it comes to privacy. Chrome is still even present in webviewif you are not rooted or on CalyxOS or even GrapheneOS. I do…

5.8.6 - Cellphone keyboards

Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 5.8.6 - Cellphone Keyboardss - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 5.8.6 - Cellphone Security - Keyboards #privacy #OpenBoard #FlorisBoard @android @f-droid #AnySoftKeyboard

5.9 Ant-laden gloves and an Apple? (iOS 14 preview) - first published on September 11th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 5.9 - Cellphone Security -_ iOS 14 preview)
(Bear with me on this one...) The Sateré-Mawé indigenous people who live deep in the Amazon have a ritualwhere boys as young as 12 years old must gather bullet ants from the forestwhich are then loaded into special gaunlets until full...thus the ‘ant-ladengloves’. The boys wear the gloves for 10…

5.9.1 Debloating Samsung - first published on 25th September 2020

Privacy Cookbook - 5.9.1 - Debloat Samsung Flagships s20 Note 20 Ultra
Some of you might not have the luxury of going fully private by picking up aLinux phone or GrapheneOS (Pixel) but maybe need to go for a full blown Androidphone. Perhaps that’s for business or because you just feel that the pen ismightier than the sword so go for Note 20 Ultra. Oh yes, its a sexy…

5.9.2 CalyxOS - first published

Privacy Cookbook - Cellphone Safety - Chapter 5.9.2 - CalyxOS
When it comes to custom ROMs and privacy on a mobile phone it was always GrapheneOS [] for me. Even though it only works on Pixel Phones, it was just something I always feltcomfortable leaving the house with, knowing I was not being traced, or sp…

5.9.3 Wake up! - first published

Privacy Cookbook - Cellphone Security - Ch 5.9.3 - Wake Up!
To me it’s a sad state of affairs seeing people, including family and friends,who still use their phones or their Windows based computers just the way thevendors provided and support it, straight out of the box. The argument is usually that “I need it for business” or “it just needs towork”. Oh …

5.9.4 CalyxOS vs GrapheneOS - first published

Privacy Cookbook Ch 5.9.4 Cell Security Calyx v Graphene
More than a few people around me are waking up and realising that the simplecellphone is the weakest link when it comes to privacy. I’ve reported about GrapheneOS in the past and use it as my personal dailydrive. GrapheneOS - A phone free future? Privacy & Security MatterMy entire life (itsee…

5.9.5 iOS Shortcuts - first published April 2nd 2021

Privacy Cookbook- Chapter 5.9.5 - Cellphone Security - iOS Shortcuts
Today I want to show you some pretty cool stuff that you can do with shortcutson iOS. We all know iOS is a locked-down Apple closed garden when it comes to apps andit’s entire ecosystem. This is the main argument in the Android vs iOS debatesand Android people will always have the ONE argument t…

5.9.6 - iOS Browsers - first published May 7th 2021

Privacy Cookbook- Ch 5.9.6 Cell Security - iOS browser recos
One of the big myths about iOS is that as every browser is based on Safarianyway, you should just use Safari out of the box. And even though thatstatement is not completely untrue, as every browser is indeed using thebuilt-in Safari engine, not every browser is equally private or secure. Someeve…

5.9.7 - Android Browsers - first published May14th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 5.9.7 Cell Security Android browsers
Recently, in chapter 5.9.6, I had a look at browsers on iOS and I shared mypersonal favorites. Today I would like to dive into Android. Let’s be clear -the pre-installed Chrome or Samsung’s Internet browser are both sending a lot oftelemetry and data about you to their (mothership) headquarters. …

5.9.8. - Best Mobile Development 2021

Privacy Cookbook — Ch 5.9.8 - Best Mobile Developement 2021 - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 5.9.8 - Cellphone Security — Best Privacy Development on Mobile for 2021 #privacy @GrapheneOS

Chapter 6 - PCs, Desk & Laptops

6.0 PCs, Desk & Laptops - first published on February 7th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6 - PCs, Desk & Laptops
The Privacy Cookbook kicks on in Chapter 6 with PCs, where we will cover theset-up on desk & laptops. This is a big chapter as we try to cover everythingfrom the best Operating Systems to Firewalls to DNS to VPN to Metadataprotection to encrypting data and emails. Yes, it will be a long one. …

6.1 MacOS - first published on February 12th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.1 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - MacOS
Before we jump into secure Linux distribution and what options you have to makeyour computer really secure, let’s cover off MacOS. Firstly, I recommend to start with a fresh copy of your OS. Even though thisstep is optional for you, I strongly recommend you to do so. Boot into Recovery Mode H…

6.1.1 - macOS firewalls

Privacy Cookbook Ch 6.1.1 PCs & Laptops - macOS firewalls - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 6.1.1 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - macOS firewall/network monitor - simple #privacy protection #littlsnitch

6.2 Linus distros for beginners - first published on February 14th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.2 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - Linux distros for beginners
Many of today’s internet users are on Windows and the rest are on Mac (truish!).And Mac is great, of course, when you also have an iPhone but then you’reprobably too far down the rabbit hole to get out. Windows, on the other hand, isso so deep that even rabbit couldn’t find it’s way out! We co…

6.2.1 coreboot - first published on June 12th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.2.1 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - coreboot
coreboot - Free up your firmware!Firmware is the layer between the software and the hardware of your computer.coreboot is an open source firmware. So coreboot replaces your BIOS/UEFI butfocuses on boot speed, security and flexibility. It is 100% designed to bootyour OS as rapidly as possible but…

6.3 Linux Hardening - first published on February 19th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.3 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - Linux Hardening
Before we jump into Tails and QubesOS, let’s get a hardening guide out to makeyour Linux system as secure and private as possible. Physical System Security 1. Configure BIOS to disable booting from CD/DVD, External Devices, Floppy Drivein BIOS. 2. Enable BIOS password and protect GRUB with a pa…

6.4 Tails - first published on February 21st 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.4 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - Tails
We started this Chapter with Windows and with Mac, explaining how to harden andsecure both of these operating systems as much as practical, then spiced it upwith a look at toughening Linux (ok, a bit technical but necessary as the way toa more private and secure Linux OS) BUT... these might not …

6.5 QubesOS - first published on February 26th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.5 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - QubesOS
As I’ve mentioned before, Linux is the way to go when you don’t want to be spiedon by your laptop. Perhaps you’d like Tails, as described in a previous sectionof this Chapter, if you are paranoid and don’t care that you don’t have a OSwhere you can boot up and continue from where you left off. N…

6.6 DNS & Firewalls - first published on February 28th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.6 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - DNS and Firewalls
We have mentioned previously just how important DNS is on iOS and Android andwe’ve also been over how you can secure your WiFi network with a Pi-Hole[/privacy-cookbook-chapter-3-1-put-it-in-your-pi-hole/] and with AdGuardHome[/privacy-cookbook-chapter-3-2-adguard-home/]. But, of course, there i…

6.7 Software - first published on March 4th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.7 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - Software
Hopefully by now you may well be a Linux convert? Regardless of whether you are a hardcore Linux user or have just decided tojoin a more private environment when it comes to your operating system there is,of course, always the question of “but what can i do with my new OS?”. Afterall, on Window…

6.8 ZorinOS - first published on April 24th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.8 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - ZorinOS
After Chapter 6.2 of the Privacy Cookbook, covering Linux distros for beginners,was published, I got some feedback over mastodon and through email that I hadmissed a really easy way to switch Linux distro called ZorinOS. A situation Iwill now address in this new section to Chapter 6. Well, I mus…

6.8.1 Pop!_OS - first published on June 19th 2020

Privacy Cookbook Chapter 6.8.1- PCs, Desk & Laptops - Pop_OS!
To date, I’ve covered a few great Linux distros from privacy orientated to ‘forbeginners’ setups. Today, I want to look into Pop!_OS for more then one reason. Firstly, it kicks of a series of reviews and articles about a company calledSystem76, a US based company that makes some hardcore Linux d…

6.8.2 EndeavourOS - first published on August 7th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.8.2 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - EndeavourOS
In today’s edition of the Privacy Cookbook I want to go back to Linux and itsdistros. I have gotten a lot of feedback about the previous Linux recommendation and whyI didn’t mention Arch. Well, I did mention Manjaro though, which is based onArch, and is an easy to use, beginner friendly, very co…

6.9 Firejail sandboxing - first published on May 29th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.9 - PC security - Firejail sandboxing
The beauty of the Privacy Cookbook is that I can jump around between differentchapters & sections and provide updates and insights on new products anddevelopments almost in real time. So, today I want to jump back to Secure PC setup and add to the information onLinux! Sandboxing is one of thos…

6.9.1 Secure File Transfer & the Wormhole - first published on June 5th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.9 - Secure File Transfer & the Wormhole
Today, we take a step back to the chapter on desktop PCs as I introduce you tothe Wormhole. Wormhole is a secure file transfer method what can send files securely viacommand-line, from Linux to Linux user or within your own local network. To install Wormhole, first start up your Terminal: Ctrl…

6.9.2 Password Managers - first published April 23rd 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 6.9.2 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - Password Managers
When it comes to passwords, it is always smart to use a password manager.Consider this, if you can remember a password easily, then it will probably alsobe easy to crack. Most password manager reviews and privacy advocates alike recommend Bitwarden asthe best available manager. It’s open source,…

6.9.3 OS for Windows and macs

Privacy Cookbook Ch 6.9.3 PCs, Desk/Laptops OS Windows Mac - Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 6.9.3 - PCs, Desk & Laptops - OS for Windows and Mac guide to blocking iCloud while retaining functionality

Chapter 7 - Social Media

7.0 Social Media - first published on March 6th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7 - Social Media
I hope that so far I’ve managed to share some good ways to make your computer,cellphones and other devices safer, more secure and more private.. Today’s Privacy Cookbook is the opening salvo on a cause of immense concern andwhich affects many of our lives especially from the privacy angle: Soc…

7.1 Decentralized Social Networks - first published on May 15th 2020

Privacy Cookbook chapter 7.1 decentralized social networks
It had to happen, takes on decentralized social networks! In chapter 7 of the Privacy Cookbook, we talked about Twitter, Facebook andYouTube and what to do to be able to watch and read them safely and securely,without the ‘Googley’ or Zuckerbergy’ interference. So today, I wa…

7.2 YouTube - first published on May 22nd 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7.2 - Social Media - YouTube alternatives
In our last edition of the Privacy Cookbook I looked at various decentralizedand federated solutions for social media. Today I want to take a closer look into YouTube! It is, after all, the one appthat most people seem least able to get away from! Let me start by pointing out that YouTube (own…

7.2.1YouTube-dl - first published April 30th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7.2.1 - Social Media - YouTube-dl
I guess we can all agree that YouTube can be entertaining, might even be a goodsource for news and that you can use it to listen to all kinds of music. This is all great, yet as you know YouTube is Google, and Google is not yourfriend. Google is the kid that claims to be your friend, but then sp…

7.3 Fediverse, Mastodon & Pixelfed - first published on June 26th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Decentralized Social Media - Fediverse
There is another dangerous virus that has been going around for a while now andit is called Social Media and it comes in multiple forms: Facebook, Twitter,Instagram and the like. But there are cures & therapeutics available, to use theparlance of the day, and it simply involves users voting with …

7.4 reddit, teddit and RSS - first published on December 11th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7.4 - Social Media - reddit, teddit and RSS
Social Media seems to be something that many of us can’t live without, althoughsome ofus have discovered some friendly options in things like Mastodon.Likewise YouTube has some alternate solutions to get around Google’s masscollection of data with NewPipe[…

7.5 Safety Briefing! - first published on January 21st 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 7.5 - Social Media - Safety Briefing! - #Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7.5 - Social Media - a Safety Briefing! #nitter #invidious #teddit #piped #privacyredirect

7.6 Frontends and Redirects - first published on January 29th 2022

Privacy Cookbook Ch 7.5 Social Media Frontends and Redirects - Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 7.5 - Social Media - Frontends and Redirects #piped #invidious #NewPipe #Beatbump #Nitter

Chapter lock.down

Special one-off - first published on March 27th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter lock.down
The new normal around the world is working from home. Lockdown time. As sad asthat may be at this stage, you can still be aiming to make the most out of it. Connecting with loved ones, working from home, whatever, I wouldn’t be thePrivacy Advocate and this wouldn’t be the Privacy Cookbook if I ju…

Chapter 8 - Home Office Apps

8.0 Nextcloud - first published on April 4th 2020 - privacy cookbook Nextcloud home office app
Let’s start with an explanation as to what Nextcloud is? It’s a fully opensource storage and productivity platform that keeps you in control. It’s amonster when it comes to features and you can seriously look to making it yourfull blown android/google and desktop as well as iCloud replacement! …

8.1 Jitsu Meet - first published on April 8th 2020 - Jitsi Meet is a solid video conference with encryption option
Since the lockdown, Zoom had become the goto tool for video conferencing. But the list of incidences, including their claim of End-to-End Encryption that was never actually implemented, have made Zoom one of the worst choices you can make.One product that you can use is Jitsi Meet.

8.1.1 Jitsu Meet finetuning - first published on May 8th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - 8.1.1 - Home Office Apps - Jitsi Meet fine tuning
In chapter 8.1, I talked about a great alternative to Zoom and other ‘work fromhome’ video apps. Today, I want to dig deeper into the fine tuning of an ownserver setup and other apps to use. - Jitsi Meet is a solid video conference with encryption optionSince thelockdown, Zoom had become t…

8.2 Home Office Apps - RSS - first published on February 12th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 8.2 - Home Office Apps - RSS
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) has been around since early March 1999 whenNetscape created RDF Site Summery which was effectively the first version ofRSS. It was used by publishers to display their content to Afew months after the first release Netscape simplified the technology…

8.3 - Planner - first published August 20th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 8.3 - Home Office Apps - Planner
If you are a Mac user, you probably know, or even use, Things 3, a professionalplanning app that makes a professional’s life on a Mac-powered device mucheasier. However, maybe you be one of the people who don’t like to be in a ‘closedgarden’ setup and have to endure some Apple scanning going on…

8.4 - Scribe

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 8.4 - Home Office Apps - Scribe - Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 8.4 - Home Office Apps - #Scribe a simple alternative to Medium #Redirector #UntrackMe #privacy

8.5 CryptPad - first published on February 11th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 8.5 Home Office Apps - CryptPad - #PrivacyCookbook - Chapter 8.5 Home Office Apps - dump #googledocs forever #CryptPad #open-source #encryptedfiles

Chapter 9 - Analytics

9.0 Analytics - first published on July 10th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 9.0 - Analytics
As a regular reader of the you’ll know that I’m not a fan ofanything that invades your privacy, sells your data and tracks your every move.Sadly, most websites take the easy way out when it comes to stats and chooseGoogle ANAL-ytics! But you know you can actually run analytics…

9.1 Less data, JustDeleteMe - first published on April 9th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 9.1 - Analytics - Less data, JustDeleteMe
How many websites and services you joined in your life? How many you do you not even remember joining? I’m sure you ask yourself these questions from time to time? Well, if not, you should! All of these companies have some data stored on you and this data will stillgetting shared and this i…

Chapter 10 - Identity Preservation

10.0 Hiding in Plain Sight - first published on August 14th 2020

Privacy Cookbook Ch 10 - Identity Preservation - Hiding in Plain Sight
Let’s suppose that you really do want to be anonymous on the internet, soperhaps you have chosen to go with Linux, with a secure setup, ditching Windowsand all the other data collection services from your hard drive, or at leastfound the right browser, maybe even gone with the tor-browser and at …

10.1 Email - first published on August 21st 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 10.1 - Identity Preservation - Email
One of the biggest security issues around today’s internet world is email. Afterall, this is something that has been around for a relatively long time andemails are needed on almost every website you sign up to. So, as we know, anemail is a pretty easy point of failure and can give away a lot of …

10.2 Amazon, Google, Apple, Microsoft, PlayStation, Steam... - first published on 18th September 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 10.2 - Identity Preservation - Bitrefill
There are circumstances in life where you are forced to use the big guys! Oneexample recently was when a friend of mine explained that he had been issuedwith an iPhone by his company and so basically had no choice but to use it. Samesame with Steam where you need to use your credit card, as with …

10.3 on mobile - first published on April 16th 2021

Privacy Cookbook- Chapter 10.3 - Identity Preservation - On Mobile
> “I have nothing to hide“ Yes, we know ;) and yet you close the door when you use the bathroom and drawyour curtains when you undress and go to bed. Well, maybe not everyone, butlet’s go with the majority! I have stretched the ‘nothing to hide’ argument so many times with friends andfamily. An…

10.4 - a new identity set up - first published May 21st 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 10.4 Identity Preservation - new devices
The Privacy Cookbook usually provides guidance and instructions on how to makeyour existing hardware more secure. In today’s chapter section, I want to coverthe question”if you are up for a new device, what should I get?” CellphoneWhen it comes to cellphones, let’s be blunt, you will never be pr…

10.5 - Threat Levels

Privacy Cookbook Ch 10.5 Identity Preservation Threat Levels - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 10.5 — Identity Preservation — Threat Levels #privacy #pixelphone #grapheneOS #calyxOS #rethinkdns

Chapter 11 - Smart Home

11.0 Smart Home - first published on August 28th 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 11 - Smart Home
Two days ago, I wrote a piece on how “AWARE” Google is of you in your homesurroundings and some of it may even have sounded pretty good to some people,for others it will have been pretty scary. Sure it must be great when you cancontrol your lights, your coffee machine, the temperature throughout …

11.1 Router and Mesh

Privacy Cookbook - Ch. 11.1 - Smart Home - Router and Mesh - Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 11.1 - Smart Home - Router and Mesh #privacy #GL.iNet Home mesh and #router combo for internet security

Special Edition - join the anti-establishment Mazilla vs the better way or go UNFCK yourself! Published on October 9th 2020

Privacy Cookbook the anti-establishment Mozilla or go UNFCK yourself!
Your chance to join the anti-establishment Mozilla vs the better way in thisspecial edition of the Privacy Cookbook, which is published every Friday, hereon Mozilla has started a campaign about how to UNFCK the internet. As much as thissounds like a great idea and has an hono…

Chapter 12 - Decentralized Marketplaces

12.0 The PART of the Deal, the Cypherpunk Way - first published October 16th 2020

Privacy Cookbook Ch 12 Decentralized marketplaces The PART of the Deal
Particl - The PART of the Deal > “Privacy is necessary for an open society in the electronic age. Privacy is notsecrecy. A private matter is something one doesn’t want the whole world to know,but a secret matter is something one doesn’t want anybody to know. Privacy isthe power to selectively…

12.1 DeCommerce is about to become a reality - first published October 23rd 2020

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 12.1 - DeCommerce is about to become a reality
DeCommerce is about to become a reality. Buying and selling online without anyintermediary, in complete privacy, and with no logins or personal detailsrequired? That’s what Particl Marketplace offers. While this trustlessmarketplace protocol has been live for more than a year now, the Particl tea…

12.2 Decentralized Marketplaces - DeFi/DEX - The next step in decentralization - first published February 15th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 12.2 Decen Markets - DeFi/DEX -the next step
Decentralization is a word people in crypto like to throw around. Same goes forthe privacy folks who also dream of decentralization, yet we see these samepeople trading their decentralized cryptocurrencies on centralized exchangeslike Bttrex, Binance and their ilk. When Bittrex announced the rec…

Chapter 13 - Search Engines

13.0 Searching

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 13 - Search Engines - Searching...
So you’ve started to ‘DeGoogle’ your life, did you? If not, please start byrereading the Privacy Cookbook from Chapter one ;) But let’s say you’ve started to make the steps needed to DeGoogle or UnGoogleyour life. You’re becoming a bit more privacy orientated and maybe have evenusing an Invidiou…

Chapter 14 - Programming

14.0 Coding

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 14 - Programming - Coding without the MS BS
Many developers use GitHub to share the source code of their respectiveprograms, apps etc. In fact, millions of people are using it daily. Yet it isowned by Microsoft, purchased a little over 2 years ago. GitHub isclosed-sourced. Let that sink in! The source code is not open-source, the siteis o…

Chapter 15 - Keeping Kids Secure

15.0 - Keeping Kids Secure - first published February 8th 2021 Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 15 - Keeping Kids Secure
In this new chapter; I’m looking into privacy for kids. In today’s digital age,where everyone is online pretty much 24/7 it is even more important to have asecure and safe setup for the little ones as well as for the teenagers (whothink they know it all). A major issue we’ve encountered since th…

15.1 - Them, You and the Home Office - first published March 19th 2021

Privacy Cookbook Ch 15.1 Keeping Kids Secure, Them and the Home Office
Before we continue next week with “The one with the Pi — Kodi your Netflix, TVand Mediathek wonder!” We need to sneak in two features: a Google Translatereplacement and a tool to help (you and/or ) your kid(s) write better. Yes, this is a bit of a mixed bag entry but one that your kids can use a…

15.2 - The School Pi - first published February 26th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 15.2 & 18.2 - The School Pi
I know last time out on The one with the Pi, I said the next ‘piece of Pi’ wouldbe about Kodi, but I just got so fired up when I was thinking about how bad thedevices we give our kids for school are so I changed tack. Mostly loaded with Microsoft (if the kids are lucky) they might have an iPad.…

Chapter 16 - Gaming

16.0 - Linux based options - first published August 27th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 16 - Gaming - Linux based options
In chapter 18.4 — ‘The One with the Pi’, we cover retro gaming and how aRaspberry Pi could be the perfect solution when it comes to playing the arcadeclassics. Sadly, Windows rules when it comes to PC gaming! Privacy Cookbook- Chapter 18.4 - The One with the Pi - A RetroPie!One of mypersonal fav…

Chapter 17 - Decentralize It Yourself (DIY)

17.0 - Decentralize It Yourself - first published January 22nd 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 17 - Decentralize It Yourself (DIY)
One of the best ways to be safe online is to decentralize. This is easier saidthan done. The fediverse comes to mind when it comes to federated hosts whichallow communicating with each other and you wouldn’t be bound to one singlepoint of failure. Of course Matrix (element) is another great examp…

17.1 - Content Management Systems - first published September 10th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 17.1 - DIY Content Management Systems
Let’s face it, open-source is wonderful. And it\s even more awesome if you hostit yourself. I covered yunohost in Chapter 17 which explains how it makes thingsdead simple for self-hosting. In case you missed it, check it out here: Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 17 - Decentralize It Yourself (DIY)One …

17.2 - Blogging - first published September 17th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 17.2 Decentralize It Yourself Blogging
Last week we covered CMS for your self-hosted website, but sometimes thatcomplex is not what you need! Sometimes you just want a ‘Medium’ style blog,where you write, self-hosted and no middle man involved. With luck, you might even find one that connects to the fediverse! Well, if sothen I reall…

Chapter 18 - The One with the Pi

18.0 - Umbrel Bitcoin - first published January 29th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 18 - The One with the Pi - Umbrel Bitcoin
Regulars here will know that I am always on the hunt for new tools that can makeyour lives more decentralized and more private and to bring these to you in ThePrivacy Cookbook. Finding something that does both is usually the best solution. I also cover blockchain technology and as I was a bitcoin…

18.1 - VPN, DNS and Firewall - first published March 5th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Ch. 18.1 - The One with the Pi - VPN, DNS, Firewall
In the most recent chapter of the Privacy Cookbook, no. 18, The One with the Pi,I covered a simple solution to becoming your very own Bitcoin lightning node, oreven starting a small bitcoin company and all with a $35 USD Raspberry Pi[]. Now I have previously covered V…

18.2 - The School Pi - first published February 26th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 15.2 & 18.2 - The School Pi
I know last time out on The one with the Pi, I said the next ‘piece of Pi’ wouldbe about Kodi, but I just got so fired up when I was thinking about how bad thedevices we give our kids for school are so I changed tack. Mostly loaded with Microsoft (if the kids are lucky) they might have an iPad.…

18.3 - Kodi Pi - first published May 7th 2021

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 18.3 - The One with the Pi - Kodi Pi
In case you hadn’t realised by now, I am kind of a Raspberry-Pi fan. One of thebest uses for a Raspberry-Pi is to protect your privacy, Pi-Hole and AdguardHomeboth run smoothly on a Pi, but today’s entry is about something about which I amvery passionate. If you read the EXPOSED […

18.4 RetroPie - first published May 7th 2021

Privacy Cookbook- Chapter 18.4 - The One with the Pi - A RetroPie!
One of my personal favourites is the Raspberry-Pi and the power that comes withit. I’ve covered Kodi, adblocking, Bitcoin and even recommended the little beastas a school computer. But the Pi can be so much more. Remember the time you played on Sega, Nintendo, Atari, or your Commodore back inthe…

18.5 - Best device 2021

Privacy Cookbook — Ch 18.5 — The Pi, device of the year 2021 - Privacy Cookbook — Chapter 18.5 — The One with the Pi — Device of the year 2021 #privacy #Pi hands down winner

18.6 The Pi Foundation - first published February 18th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 18.6 - The one with Pi Foundation - #PrivacyCookbook - Chapter 18.6 - The one with the #raspberrypifoundation #digitalliteracy #teachingIT #India #pratham

Chapter 19 - The One with the Apple

19.0 New Persona - first published February 25th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 19 The one with the Apple New Persona - #Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 19 - The one with the Apple - A New Persona #privacycookbook #apple #bitrefill

19.1 Locking it down - first published March 7th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 19.1 - The one with the Apple - locking it down - #PrivacyCookbook - Chapter 19.1 - The one with the #Apple - locking it down #firewalls #DNS #privacy #lulu #littlesnitch

19.2 Apps - first published March 21st 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Ch 19.2 - The one with the Apple - Apps - #PrivacyCookbook - Chapter 19.2 - The one with the #Apple - Apps #bitwarden #keepass #librewolf #libredirect #noscript

Chapter 20 - Samsung (The Galaxy Guide)

20.0 Part 1 - first published March 28th 2022

Privacy Cookbook Chapter 20 Samsung (The Galaxy Guide) Pt 1
#decentralize,today - #PrivacyCookbook – Chapter 20 – #Samsung (The #Galaxy Guide) Part 1 #bromite #samsung #android #fdroid #bromite #privacy

20.1 Part 2 - first published April 4th 2022

Privacy Cookbook – Ch 20.1 – Samsung (Galaxy Guide) Part 2 - #Privacy Cookbook – Chapter 20.1 – #Samsung (The #Galaxy Guide) Part 2 making your device more privacy-friemdly #cellphone

Chapter 21 - Emails

21.0 5 things... - first published April 11th 2022

Privacy Cookbook - Chapter 19 - 5 Things You Should Know About Email Trackers - #PrivacyCookbook - Chapter 19 - 5 Things You Should Know About #Email Trackers #VPN #adblockers #privacy #cookies

And so the journey continues...

PS Don't go looking for any previous Indexes, this is the only one!

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