Can the FBI see your browser history if you use a VPN?
WASHINGTON, DC – JANUARY 29: Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell is seen during a press conference on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, January 29, 2019, in Washington, DC (Photo by Sloane George/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
As many of you know, the US Senate has passed a bill to extend the elements of the Patriot Act. Notably, this legislation included parts that would increase the ability of the FBI and the CIA to legally access your browser search history without a court order.
Several organizations, including the American Civil Liberties Union, have pushed for an amendment to this law that would protect the internet privacy of American citizens. However, as of May 15, 2020, these amendments have not passed. Since other modifications they were On the bill, it is currently being passed to the House of Representatives for a second vote before it can be signed into law.
This made some people wonder, “Can a VPN protect me from the FBI’s access to my browsing history?”
Before we get too deep, I think it’s important to address the elephant in the room. This is not a sponsored article. However, it contains affiliate links that give Android salad Deduction of profits if you choose to make a purchase with them. If you decide to choose a VPN here, you will get a quality VPN service while also helping us keep the lights on.
So, will a VPN protect you from the FBI?
The short answer, not necessarily
When law enforcement acquires your browsing history, with or without a command, their first stop is your ISP. Your ISP can see all the websites you visit and keep a record of your traffic just for this purpose. However, using a VPN prevents this.
See also: How does a VPN work
Although browsing with a VPN prevents your ISP from tracking your movements, your ISP may not be the FBI’s only stop in the investigation. They can also track and request logs from your VPN provider.
Many VPNs claim to keep no logs, but several lawsuits have proven that this is not always the truth. If you are using a VPN, it is important that you choose a network that you trust. In the end, using a VPN only diverts your vulnerabilities from your ISP to your VPN provider.
Multiple precautionary measures
Experts like Edward Snowden advocate several actively managed lines of defense for true Internet security. Tor Browser is one of the best tools out there for you to use in addition to a VPN.
Tor is a system that routes all of your web traffic through publicly listed random entry nodes. It makes your behavior anonymous by bouncing your traffic through multiple relays and mixing it with other users. This makes your actual chain of behavior essentially impossible to follow.
For maximum privacy, your best bet is to use a VPN And A secure browser like Tor. However, this comes at the cost of significantly lower speeds.
Make good decisions
The old argument often circulated when government power is extended to encroach on individual privacy is: “If you have done nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear.”
While the concept is sound enough in theory, it is often used to make the taste of authoritarian measures more palatable. It hints that anyone interested in digital privacy only cares about it because they have something to hide.
In my opinion, this is a cowardly position that is submissive to power and shows a clear ignorance of the ways in which power has been abused throughout history for personal and political motives. You are free, of course, to disagree. You have individual rights, after all.
However, don’t be stupid. If you use the internet to break the law, you take a risk no matter how hard you try to protect yourself. Don’t rely on a VPN to try to get away with things you know you shouldn’t do anyway.
See also: What can VPNs do with your data?
And now, the dependent part
SurfShark, in particular, is becoming increasingly popular thanks to the outspoken promotion of its “no registration” policy.
No matter where you get your VPN, do your research and make a wise decision. However, if you decide to get yours from TechDeals, we’ll get a discount. If you would like to support us while protecting your privacy, we would definitely appreciate it.