F., we are committed to setting up people in their late twenties to mid-forties with fun friendships that are easy to maintain. (Answering any earlier than 10 you like brunch, but are you just going to order a dry English muffin and a black coffee like a weirdo?
But, once you're no longer swimming in a petri dish of emotional desperation and hormones, it can be hard to find new people you actually want to spend time with. No one has time for your housewarming parties or improv shows.—Speaking of parties, do you like to have a big blowout birthday bash, or is a moderately sized family-style-Chinese-dinner thing good? —Back to housewarmings: How many times have you moved in the past five years? —Do you know a good therapist who takes your friend's insurance and is accepting new clients? The Indian place around the corner only has a ten-dollar minimum and delivers until midnight.
Make sure you record them though as they may be required for identification purposes later on, for example your date of birth is requested as part of an account unlock process.
put them in a text file on your desktop called "my secret online identity", put them in an encrypted keychain such as 1Password's. Then go generate yourself a fake identity: Be conscious also that sometimes the phone number is required for verification purposes, for example you may need to demonstrate that you can receive and SMS to the number.
Let's jump into it, and we'll start somewhere simple.
The easiest personal identifier that will match you to a site is your email address.
This is a very particular class of site and like many others we've recently seen compromised, it's highly likely that members would have preferred to keep their identities secret.
Ashley Madison is a perfect example of that and many people were shocked at just how many identities were contained in the data, identities that then caused a great deal of grief for their owners.Whilst that's unlikely to be the threat that most folks just wanting to remain genuinely anonymous on the classes of personal site we continually see being breached, it's also an unnecessary risk.Gmail (or equivalent - there are many other free online mail providers) gives you a full blown email address and obviously requests a lot of info in the process.I'd also like to encourage those who do give online anonymity a lot of thought to leave their suggestions in the comments section, keeping in mind the target audience being your normal, everyday people.Let's start somewhere extremely practical yet often not acknowledged in discussions on privacy and anonymity. It's cool either way; just don't lie, because opinions about brunch are one of the strongest indicators of the viability of an adult friendship.—Follow-up question: What's the earliest you can meet up on a Sunday morning and call it "brunch"?" or just leave it alone and never speak of it again? If so, is it just, like, a fun thing you do, or are you always talking about "book club" and all the "important" books you read for it and all the "book-club drama," like anyone not in the book club cares? Totally fine either way, but, if you _ _have kids, do you feel compelled to talk about your kids all the time? Many of the data breaches I come across have numerous Mailinator addresses in them for precisely this reason.The email address is the first, most logical step and honestly this is a huge portion of the anonymity story as it relates to identities being spread around the web when a system is compromised. Consider the data that many sites request on signup: name, location (possibly your exact address), date of birth, phone number etc.Of course the latter will usually also protect you from the former, but it also often comes with an additional burden to implement.I'm going to focus on what's readily accessible to the bulk of the population.