A User's Guide to Protecting Your Privacy

Six simple tools that will safeguard your gear and identity from digital intruders.

Six simple tools that will safeguard your gear and identity from digital intruders.

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Photograph by Plamen Petkov

PROTECT YOUR: Phone

SERVICE: Lookout Mobile Security

HOW IT WORKS: The app scans for malware and viruses and will track a stolen phone. Subscribers can remotely lock it and purge contacts.

COST: Free app and basic service; $30/year for a subscription; mylookout.com

PROTECT YOUR: Home

SERVICE: Dropcam

HOW IT WORKS: A camera sends a live, encrypted feed from your living room to a PC or smartphone from which you can zoom, pan, and turn on night vision.

COST: $279 for camera and $9/month for premium service; dropcam.com

PROTECT YOUR: Laptop

SERVICE: Prey

HOW IT WORKS: It tracks your stolen computer, password-protects it, and erases all your stored passwords. It'll also snap the perp's picture, grab screenshots of his digital doings, and sound an alarm.

COST: Free account; preyproject.com

PROTECT YOUR: Car

SERVICE: Viper SmartStart GPS

HOW IT WORKS: Your car's GPS module links to the phone's SmartStart app, letting you know if the car moves without you, monitoring its location, and controlling the locks, engine, and alarm.

COST: $399 for GPS and $70/year for service; viper.com

PROTECT YOUR: Web searches

SERVICE: Cocoon

HOW IT WORKS: It routes your browsing activity through its server and stores your encrypted cookies. Plus, it creates a temporary e-mail address when you need one to log into a site.

COST: Free; getcocoon.com

PROTECT YOUR: Passwords

SERVICE: LastPass

FEATURES: It generates impossible-to-guess codes for your online accounts (e-mail, social networks, banking) and saves them on its server. Then when you sign into LastPass, it automatically fills in all your stored passwords.

COST: Free; $1/month for phone access; lastpass.com

—Josh Dzieza

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