MaskMe: Keeping Your Personal Data Safe

MaskMeToday, we do so very much online. Increasingly, our personal data is all over the Internet. Whether shopping online, managing your cheap hosting website, or conducting banking transactions, you want to be assured your data is safe.

Online privacy company Abine points out the three things Internet users think should be highly protected: phone numbers, emails, and credit card numbers. Yes, it's possible to keep this data safe in many different ways separately, but Abine wanted more. Their answer: MaskMe.

MaskMe: Keeping Your Personal Data Safe: Incognito

It is a browser extension for both Firefox and Chrome, and it gives users throwaway email addresses, credit card numbers, and phone numbers. How exactly does it work?

Let's say you sign up for a newsletter that you think you'll find interesting using your masked email address. After a month of emails three times a day offering content of no interest to you whatsoever, you simply get rid of the email address, like throwing it away. As MaskMe describes the feature: “an unsubscribe button that always works.”

MaskMe: Keeping Your Personal Data Safe: Solving A Big Problem?

DataLossDB points out that 500 data breaches have occurred worldwide from January to June 2013. In all, 2012 saw 1,612 data breach instances. It doesn't matter how careful we try to be, breaches are just a fact of life. Even cheap hosting sites like WordPress aren't immune to security breaches.

So MaskMe tries to solve the problem in a new way: if the data a company stores in their database isn't even real to begin with, they can't lose anything important or sensitive. Wouldn't you rather a crook get their hands on your fake credit card number rather than your real one? Let them try to use it! The joke's on them!

MaskMe Premium

This credit card protection is offered in their Premium version, as well as phone number protection, for a monthly fee of five dollars. You simply create ‘virtual credit cards' that are linked up in a secure fashion to your real credit card number. Though the vendor doesn't have your real card number on file, you are able to conduct online transactions with ease. The payment itself is associated with Abine, and comes up as such on your credit card bill. When you are done with that site, you are able to delete that fake number as well!

If you want a secure phone number, the browser extension creates a dummy number you can provide the stores that ask for your phone number prior to conducting a transaction or even those online websites that require you to enter your phone number to continue with a task.

There are iOS and Android apps as well, both requiring a Premium subscription, and the iOS app gives you the power to call others using your MaskMe number!

Try It!

Will you give MaskMe a try? Mashable recently took it for a spin, and they loved the service. In their words, “There is certainly something to be said about its ease of access and how much simpler using one system is.”

In today's electronic age, where so much of our data is floating around on the Internet and so many malicious users are trying their hardest to get their hands on this data, any protection is a good idea — especially when it comes to your email address and credit card information!

What do you think about this handy service?

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