Digital Self-Protection

In short, privacy matters. Whether you have something to hide or not really isn’t the point — our rights are not structured based on how much we care to exercise them.

“The internet is a crucial environment for our lives. Friendships, relationships, work, activism, commerce, and so many other forms of social connections take place digitally. As we thrive in these internet spaces, harassment and violence along intersecting axes of oppression are felt with unchecked force. Trolls launch campaigns of abuse and intimidation, hackers seek to exploit and manipulate your private data, and companies mine and sell your activity for profit. These threats to digital autonomy are gendered, racialized, queerphobic, transphobic, ableist, and classist in nature. The severity of these threats can have vast physical and psychological repercussions for those who experience them: they cannot be taken lightly. Digital spaces are unique in that you often have to rely on companies and developers to protect your well being and data as you go about your digital life. These companies and developers frequently ignore or underestimate the digital threats to these spaces and their users…You have a right to exist safely in digital spaces. Although we have to rely on outside parties for technology to access these spaces, there are tons of helpful tools and strategies that allow you to take greater control of your digital life and mitigate the risk of malicious threats.”

A DIY Guide to Feminist Cybersecurity

Below you will find an assortment of resources our team has compiled related to personal security and privacy on the web. The MIIS Cyber Initiative is an internal resource for the Middlebury community that you might look to for further information and expertise.

Guides & Kits 

Alternative Search Engines & Browsers 



Browser-based Ad Blockers & Anti-tracking Plug-Ins

  • The Best Browser Extensions that Protect Your Privacy
  • HTPPS Everywhere – EFF browser extension that encrypts your communications with many major websites, making your browsing more secure
  • Panopticlick EFF tool to test your browser anti-tracking set up
  • Adblock Plus
  • UBlock Origin – free, open source, cross-platform browser extension for content-filtering and ad-blocking
  • Better – privacy app for Safari on iPhone, iPad, and Mac ($$)
  • BlockBear – adblocker app for iPhone or iPad
  • Disconnect – visualize & block the invisible websites that track you
  • Ghostery – detects and blocks tracking technologies on the websites you visit to speed up page loads, eliminate clutter, and protect your data and privacy
  • Privacy Badger – project of the EFF that blocks spying ads and invisible trackers

People/Orgs to Follow

Additional Resources


Digital Detox Link

Photo by Samantha Sophia on Unsplash