VPN l August 11, 2017

How Smart DNS Proxy's Data Encryption Preserves Online Privacy

When you log on to the internet, you are sending massive amounts of personal data over the web. Certain websites and more dangerously cyber criminals can use this personal data of yours to achieve various ends. Your data should be protected mainly from malicious hackers, who could use it to blackmail you, steal your money, or publicly embarrass you. There are plenty of news stories about hacks that have ruined companies and lives. So it’s necessary now more than ever to protect the data you send over the net.

Smart DNS Proxy is commonly used by regular web surfers to bypass geographical restrictions. But the proxy server also serves a primary purpose of protecting data transmitted when you interact with websites, such as paying for a new toothbrush on Amazon. Smart DNS Proxy uses an essential tool called an encryption protocol when protecting your data as your surf the web. This article will explain what encryption is, and how Smart DNS Proxy uses encryption for your protection.

What is Data Encryption?

Data encryption is a method that makes the information unreadable to people who are not intended to receive it. If you are an avid reader of spy novels or thrillers, you might be familiar with the concept of ciphering. Ciphers put regular, perfectly readable messages into a secret code that can only be deciphered with a key. Only people with the right key can read the ciphered message. This is the basic principle behind data encryption. Data is encrypted so that unwanted third parties like criminal hackers cannot decipher it, even if the data in question is stolen. Encrypted data can only be decrypted with the right key.

Unlike with written ciphers, data is encrypted uses computer code. When data is encrypted, it’s called ciphertext, and when it is not encrypted, the information is referred to as plaintext. Online data is encrypted used algorithms, like the Rivest-Shamir-Adleman (RSA) algorithm. Plaintext uses an encryption code to make the data incomprehensible to both computers and people. Then this ciphertext requires a secret key to decrypt and make sense of the data.

It should be noted that the online ciphertexts are not super secret messages like the ones you read about in novels. Ciphertext rather includes valuable personal data of web users, such as names, locations, IP addresses, emails, passwords, credit card numbers, and so on. If you are sending any data through a secure connection online, then it will be encrypted to protect its confidentiality.

Data encryption is like a secure envelope. The code does not mess with the information but rather envelopes it in a secure, impenetrable packet. It is the packet that is transmitted through the web. Even if a malicious hacker gets their hands on this packet, there's no way to open it, so it's practically useless.

Websites and web-based applications use different encryption methods to protect data. Out of these, there are two main types of encryption: symmetric encryption and public key encryption. Symmetric key encryption uses a single key to both encrypt and decrypt data. The sender, like your web browser or a payment app, shares this key with the device at the receiving end. Because symmetric encryption only uses a single key, this method is faster. Networks often use symmetric key encryption to transmit vast swaths of data.

The other main encryption method, public key encryption or asymmetric encryption as it is sometimes known, uses two keys to encrypt and decrypt data. One of these keys is public, and the other is secret or private. The public key is shared with everyone on the network, but the private key is kept secret. So anyone can send this data, but only the receiving party with the secret key can decrypt the data.

In case you are wondering exactly how the encryption algorithms make data unreadable, it’s done using very complex math problems that have no solutions or is nearly impossible to get a solution. So even if a math whiz gets a hold of your sensitive data, they won’t be able to solve the problems to decrypt the data without a key.

How Encryption Protects Your Privacy on the Web

The internet is notoriously insecure. Even a moderately talented hacker can get access to sensitive data if it's not protected. The internet is also crawling with various surveillance programs for states that monitor private information. No one wants their data stolen or monitored without their consent. This is why encryption plays such a crucial role in today’s internet.

Encryption provides three essential functions in protecting data; namely the integrity, authenticity, and non-repudiation of information. Integrity means that the data you send over the net remains unchanged. When you send an instant message, an email, or a transaction request, you wouldn’t want a dubious third party to change that. In worst case scenario, unprotected data could contain malware. Encryption makes sure that data remains unchanged in its journey through the network.

Data authentication simply means verifying data for the origin of the information and who sent it. A malicious party can intercept data midway through the network, and then send a compromised version instead of the original. If this happens, how the internet works will be intrinsically challenged. Encryption, therefore, makes sure that data comes from where it’s supposed to come from.

Non-repudiation of data means that a message cannot be denied sending, or repudiated, by a message sender. In a compromised system, like a browser infected with malware, the device could just deny sending a data request. This can be in general where access to the internet is disabled. Or it could be for specific requests, like verification requests or updates that eliminate malware. Encrypted data does not face repudiation by senders in this manner.

In layman’s terms, encryption protects your data from theft and being compromised. Importantly, encryption prevents a third party from hiding malware in the information you send. For example, when you send an email, encryption prevents a hacker from accessing and reading that email. If you are sending an image file to a friend, encryption prevents someone from attaching malicious code to your image file that could infect the receiving computer.

When you are online, data encryption prevents various parties from identifying your location or tracking your online activity. In the age of surveillance and censorship, many web users prefer to be anonymous online. Encryption is one of the most important tools that facilitate this.

How Does Smart DNS Proxy Use Encryption

Smart DNS is a proxy server that enables users to bypass geographical restrictions on specific websites. The application works only on one website at a time. Smart DNS allows you to connect to a proxy server bypassing your ISP's DNS. So you can trick a website into thinking you are connecting from a particular part of the world without actually physically being there. For example, if you want to access your U.S. Netflix account from China, you can use Smart DNS Proxy.

Of course, sending data even through a Smart DNS is risky. All data transmitted through a network is vulnerable to hacks and malware. Smart DNS Proxy does not enforce encryption by itself. However, the service does use existing encryption infrastructure of websites to transmit your data securely.

It should be noted that the main purpose of Smart DNS Proxy is to unblock websites, not secure your data. The privacy protection capabilities of a proxy server are notably fewer than that of a VPN. You won’t be able to become anonymous online with a proxy server. However, you can expect a reasonable amount of protection offered by existing encryption protocols in web browsers, email clients, and some web applications. Your data is not transmitted through a wholly unsecured connection.

You should remember that Smart DNS Proxy cannot protect you if you are using unsecured and unencrypted connections. The security infrastructure must exist for the service to work properly. Encryption, for the most part, is enforced via the router. If your router is not password protected or have encryption capabilities, then your data transmissions will be vulnerable to cyber threats even when going through Smart DNS Proxy.

Smart DNS Proxy will completely protect all encrypted data coming and going through the proxy server. You can enjoy a high degree of protection on all devices you use Smart DNS Proxy with, whether it’s your computer, smartphone, a gaming console, or your smart TV. It is highly recommended to use additional malware protection software if you are particularly concerned about hackings or computer viruses.

Author: Christopher Benitez