"No Romulan cloaking device (or Harry Potter invisibility cloak) for your digital footprint, including email? The Times shares easy & many free ways to create less of a lighted trail."
Sharing on FBook, Google+ and ScooptIt. Heh.
That said, I'd also say there's a balance of getting lots of services for free (Gmail, Google Search, Google Apps, tailored results) vs. the tradeoffs mentioned here. Some say it's cool, not creepy. Others, as here, say it is creepy, and NOT cool. Here's a perspective to add to your digital learning landscape. ~ Deb
It’s probably impossible to cloak your online activities fully, but there are steps you can take to make them harder to follow.
There are no secrets online. ...while it’s probably impossible to cloak your online activities fully, you can take steps, [some] quite easy and many are free.
The trick is to find the right balance between cost, convenience and privacy.
...security experts and privacy advocates said more worrisome were Internet service providers, search engine operators, e-mail suppliers and Web site administrators — particularly if a single entity acts in more than one capacity, like Google, Yahoo, Facebook and AOL. This means they can easily collect and cross-reference your data, that is, match your e-mails with your browsing history, as well as figure out your location and identify all the devices you use to connect to the Internet.
“The worst part is they sell this extremely creepy intrusion as a great boon to your life because they can tailor services to your needs,” said Paul Ohm, an associate professor at the University of Colorado Law School in Boulder who specializes in information privacy and computer crime.
He advised logging off sites like Google and Facebook as soon as practicably possible and not using the same provider for multiple functions if you can help it.
“If you search on Google, maybe you don’t want to use Gmail for your e-mail,” he said. ...But even with your own mail server, Google will still have the e-mails you exchange with friends or colleagues with Gmail accounts, said Peter Eckersley of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights advocacy group in San Francisco. “You’re less exposed,” he said. “But you can’t totally escape.”