Privacy best practices

Hello everyone,

I have a couple of questions regarding best practices I should implement to achieve decent privacy.
My goals in achieving privacy are mainly to hide my ip address from creepy spammers and malicious websites, block ads, trackers and malware.

At home, I currently use Cloudflare DNS mainly because it’s fast and reliable, but it doesn’t block ads and trackers, what DNS provider do you recommend on ?
Is Mullvad DNS fast and reliable like Cloudflare ?

Is it enough to use a free encrypted DNS service without a VPN at home ?
Do you use your VPN all the time (24/7) ? Why or why not ?


The only way to hide your IP from the sites you visit is through a VPN or Tor.

In terms of content blocking through DNS, I like Mullvad’s DNS. If I’m not using the VPN (which is Mullvad in my case), I keep using Mullvad’s DNS for content blocking. I have never noticed any slowness


My only problem with using VPN all the time is that it gets blocked by many websites and services like Reddit and even ChatGPT, what are you doing about that?

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I’ve never been blocked on Reddit while using Mullvad but, according to various posts on Reddit, it’s servers from specific countries or when a user is viewing Reddit without being logged in that results in a block.

I’ve only been blocked by Reddit when not being signed in. And when blocked, I can still click on the log in link that shows up in the blocked page, sign in and continue browsing. I don’t use ChatGPT, so I don’t know about that. In the rare occasion I’ve been blocked by some other service, I try switching servers until it works. If after a couple of switches I’m still blocked, if I’m really determined to enter that site, I’ll disable the VPN for a clean browser with split tunnel and access the site it through it.

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For DNS servers, I would look at Privacy Guides recommendations. They have some good options, but if you are going to use a VPN I would just stick with their default DNS server. Mullvad, IVPN, and Proton have good content blockers in them.

As for Mullvad DNS speeds, I never noticed any slowness, but I think it depends where you live: DNS over HTTPS and DNS over TLS | Mullvad VPN

Personally, I use my VPN all the time. But the only times you shouldn’t is when you login to websites with your real identity, such as your bank account or school accounts.

But keep in mind that a VPN will not fully protect you, it’s really just to hide your IP address from websites and privacy from your ISP.

I’ve been getting blocked on reddit too. The only way i could counter this was using the URL. It’s still reddit, just in their old interface.

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Yeah this seems to be a new issue where reddit is partially blocking VPNs now as I also have to use old.reddit.

have you considered self-hosting your own DNS server? Gives you a lot more granular control over what you are blocking.

This is very much dependent on your use case. VPNs and DNS do different things.

If you use a VPN all the time, some people just recommend using that VPN providers DNS (not sure what PGs stance on this is) instead of changing it but, you could also run whatever DNS and whatever VPN you want as well if you decided to configure things that way.

There have been cases where if you use a VPN on Reddit you get shadow banned when you first register on the website. The same case would be if you’re a Tor users despite using the Onion Service.

Actually sometimes I just use Reddit Onion site if I am blocked with VPN. It’s a shame they block you if they see a VPN.


Why? Isn’t it safer to login to my bank through a VPN if I’m on a public WiFi?

You probably shouldn’t be accessing your bank or other sensitive web stuff on public wifi generally, but using a VPN probably wouldn’t hurt if you do want to do that


Maybe on a public WiFi you could, but the bank could flag you suspicious at least what I heard from people’s experience. Besides they know who you are anyways.