Great apps for protecting your privacy

privacyWell, you’ve probably already heard plenty of commotion regarding data mining on the part of the U.S. government. It turns out that no one’s privacy is protected from the prying eyes of our leaders under any circumstance.

We may not be able to do much to protect our private phone calls from government access, but we can safeguard some of our information and documentation from unwanted invasion by other companies, software programs, and sticky fingers. We’ve got a list of apps that are great for locking photos, hiding messages, and keeping your private things the way you want them to be, private…

Wickr IconWickr – Self-Destructing, Secure, Private, Anonymous Messages & Media

The all-around go-to app for protecting your privacy while social networking on your iPhone is Wickr. This app gives control of messaging back to the sender. Each message is encrypted with its own unique keys that don’t have any decryption keys at all. It features timed removal of information so that no one will have access to your private messages. Meta-data is deleted, nothing is stored on the server, and all information is encrypted using military grade security. Wickr is perfect for people who don’t want anyone to know what they are talking about. This app is available for free.

Private Life Texting IconPrivate Life Texting – Send secret SMS messages

It recently came to light that Apple’s iMessage service is particularly difficult to crack into. Actually, “impossible to intercept” was the exact wording used by the DEA. That doesn’t mean that conversations right on your iPhone can’t be seen by snooping moms, jealous partners, or idea thieves. This app makes it impossible for anyone to see your private text messages without knowing the password. You will also see a picture of the person who tried to access your text messages so you can confront them about their prying tendencies. This app is available for $0.99.

Picture Safe IconPicture Safe – Secure Photo Vault and Private Safe for your Privacy

I recently found out that Scarlett Johansson’s phone was hacked and her nude selfies were published on the Internet. Now, I’m not going to bother trying to understand why celebrities take nude pictures of themselves when they know they are targets for privacy invasions. All I can say is that you can protect your photos with a privacy app like Picture safe. Not only does this app require password-protected storage for your device, you can create hidden folders, back up pictures, and organize your photos into different sections. Use the Quick Hide feature to replace a secret picture with a boring old spreadsheet or other not-so-secret picture. This app is on sale for $0.99 for a limited time.

NQ VaultNQ Vault

This app takes privacy a step further by letting you secure your video clips as well as your pictures. The app automatically sends pictures and videos that you take to an encrypted place that can only be accessed when you enter the correct password. You can make Facebook chats private by letting NQ Vault connect to the Facebook app. Then, all of your chats will be private. You will also know if someone is trying to break into your private collection by snapping a picture. If you get caught using Vault by someone who feels they are owed access to find out what you are up to (like a wife/husband or parent), you can show them a decoy NQ Vault app that has a whole different set of pictures. This app is available for free.

Private Files and Photos IconPrivate Files and Photos – Hide Contacts, Bookmarks, Photos, Videos, and More

Not only can you keep your photos and videos private with this app, but you can also keep contacts and other documents private, as well. You can import photos and videos from your device’s library, take pictures from within the app, and more. The app requires a passcode, or you can use Dot Lock protection for a different kind of locking. If someone tries to unlock your private folder, you’ll see their unknowing face and find out where they were when they tried to break in with the app’s camera and GPS feature. This app is available for free.

Secrets Folder Pro IconSecrets Folder Pro

If you are the kind of person who wants to keep more than just photos private, you need an app that lets you keep almost all of your information private. With this app, you’ll be able to set passcodes for pictures, notes, contacts, bank accounts, web browsers, voice memos, and more. Photos can be imported from your photo library, printed and emailed to others, and organized into albums. Notes can be created and kept private similar to the native iOS Notes app. You can import contacts from you iPhone’s address book and manage your credit card and bank account login information. This app is available for $0.99.

Full Screen Private Browsing IconFull Screen Private Browsing for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad

Everyone has a reason to hide their browsing history. Whether you don’t want your boss to know you’ve been looking for a new job, or you don’t want your husband to know how much money you’ve spent on online shopping, you’ve probably cleared your browser history a few times in your life. Instead of worrying about whether you’ve remembered to delete your activities, use this app for a completely private Internet experience. All history, cookies, and bookmarks, will be deleted every time you exit the app. Plus, you’ll get the full-screen experience that mobile Safari does not currently support by hiding the status bar. This app is available for $1.99.

Rando IconRando

This app makes it possible for you to send and receive pictures to others without them knowing who you are. It is a bit different than protecting your privacy from unwanted invasion. It is actually just a fun way to share photos with each other from all over the world without knowing who took the pictures. It is the opposite of social networking, even though it is a social sharing idea. This app is available for free.