New apps protect your device's private data

NBC
News

POSTED: Monday, February 10, 2014 - 5:09pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, February 18, 2014 - 5:25pm

Just how much information are you giving away each time you use your smart phone?

Revelations about government spy tactics reveal it may be much more than you realize, and now a growing number of companies are offering smart phone applications and devices that will help users take their privacy back.

"I think it's impossible to be 100 percent secure," says security consultant Ashkan Soltani.

To demonstrate, Soltani intercepted NBC reporter Danielle Leigh's phone activity.

Applications loaded on her phone sent out her location, age, and even shopping habits.

That's too intrusive for comfort for people like Matt Cohen, a writer working from a Washington D.C. coffee shop.

"There is a sense of privacy, I don't want all of my stuff out there for anyone to grab," he says.

Fortunately, new applications like Silent Text, Silent Phone, Red Phone, Text Secure, Safe Plug, and Secret help users interact anonymously.

"It's about being in control of your presence," says Silent Circle's Toby Weir-Jones.

Silent Circle's Silent Phone lets users make encrypted, near record-less calls and video chats.

Silent Text does the same for messaging.

In just over a week Silent Circle will also unveil the Blackphone, an anti-surveillance smartphone.

"they are much more difficult to track," he says.

But security experts say even these phones won't block the N.S.A., meaning the only way to go completely off the grid is to power down all those devices.

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Hey Danielle! Great article and really useful! Have you also tried CyberGhost VPN? It's an easy to use consumer VPN, so it's a perfect fit for people doing their job on coffee shops and for people who want to remain anonymous while surfing online. We would really appreciate it if you could give us some feedback on our privacy service. Keep up the great work!

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