In case you haven’t realized it yet, the term “Free” has an entirely different meaning when it comes to searching for free programs on the internet. If you are looking for free programs or resources online and you search on Google using the word “free”, what you will actually get is a list of links to programs and resources that are not actually free. A whole lot of stuff giving limited trial periods or will ask you to pay eventually.
This is because in technical terms, “free” does not necessarily mean “free of cost”. What it actually means is having the “freedom to access, study, copy, modify and share”. This has caused a lot of confusion for many users when searching for information online.
If you do not care about paying for the programs, software and other resources, then you may search using the word “free”. But if you are looking for something that is free of cost, then use this hack:
Search your topic with the words “open source”.
This will provide you a list of programs that come with unlimited trial versions, advertisements and malwares, and all at no cost. At least, you are more likely to get better results with this.
Open source, which is mostly used in relation to software, refers to information that is available to the public. It does not require any specialist skills, tools or techniques to access the information. It means you can use and redistribute the program freely.
There is however a downside to open source resources. If it’s open to the public, it means it can easily be found by security professionals. This also means that it can be found and used by threat actors.
Note: I’m not an expert in this concept, so please you can feel free to do more research and/or to add your comments.