Author Topic: Apple will be providing their Browser with notices of Facebook tracking!  (Read 180 times)

Offline ssfc72

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http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-44360273

According to this BBC article, Apple will soon have their Safari browser, notify the user when Facebook is tracking you and will allow the user to prevent that tracking.

The article also mentions the use of "finger printing" to track users and Apple will be shutting that down, in the Safari browser, as well.

This is great news, as far as I am concerned. Well done Apple!

I hope the other browsers will also implement these features!
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Online Jason Wallwork

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Privacy Badger, which is available as a Google extension or Firefox add-on from the EFF will block Facebook tracking as well as other trackers, most of which are associated with advertising. You can also turn on anything you want to allow. Sometimes you have to as it breaks certain sites or some sites think you're using an adblocker and won't let you access the site without turning it off.

The fingerprinting is interesting. I wasn't aware that was something you could shutdown since it's done gathering information from your browser using Javascript and because it is something that I thought was a necessity to be able to detect what browser you're using, resolution, and so on, in order to layout pages correctly. Btw, the EFF site at that link also a test that you can run to see how well your browser (including its extensions/add-ons) protect you against tracking which includes fingerprinting. It's called Panopticlick. Keep in mind that while fingerprinting can be useful for advertisers to track you somewhat, it's not as unique as an actual fingerprint. For example, when I run the test, the result is:


"Your browser fingerprint appears to be unique among the 1,646,470 tested so far.


That seems amazingly unique until you think about how many users online there are at any given time. 1 in 1.6 million doesn't seem all that identifying when you realize there are 3.2 billion internet users worldwide. That would mean there are a couple of million people using the same browser, plugins, resolution, and so on as me. It's something I have trouble getting worked up about but maybe I just fail to understand the ramifications properly. The EFF explains more about what browser fingerprinting is and how it's difficult to detect and thwart. That's why I also am doubtful that Apple's measures will do much to block fingerprinting. It's difficult to do without removing or blocking some necessary functionality but there are tips at the site.

« Last Edit: June 05, 2018, 11:10:57 am by Jason Wallwork »
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Offline fox

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Whatever else you want to say about Apple, I think that the measures they take to keep user's data private are the best of any OS. Regarding Privacy Badger, it is one of several privacy-oriented extensions I found out about by reading the May edition of Linux Journal. I put it on my home machine and the only problem with it is that it stops a number of websites from working correctly. You can set it to allow cookies and links to operate on a given site permanently, and it remembers your settings. Bottom line is that if you operate with Privacy Badger and you don't visit the same sites all the time, you will spend time assessing what you'll let through. It is somewhat annoying, but you learn quickly where that site is directing you.
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Offline ssfc72

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Thanks Jason and Mike about your info and recomendation aboiut the Privacy Badger add-on.
The add-on was available for the Opera browser and I have now installed it.

As noted in the info about Privacy Badger, I turned off the Opera ad blocker, to give Badger a better learning
 experience on what web sites I can block from tracking.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2018, 08:35:22 pm by ssfc72 »
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Online Jason Wallwork

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Yeah, I've noticed the same thing, Fox. It does take some training to use effectively. I've been using it for probably 3-6 months.

It also learns as you use it. That is, when you visit a website with a cookie or script that is a potential tracker, when you visit another site, it notes that that cookie is being accessed elsewhere which is how it partially figures out what is tracking you.

It's kind of an ad-blocker too, in that stopping the tracking scripts will prevent certain ads from showing up but certainly not as good as a regular ad-blocker, I would guess.

And I agree that Apple has been good at trying user privacy. I'd say it's hard to say it's the best of any OS since most Linux distros don't gather user data from what I know. But I remember the whole thing about how they wouldn't give the FBI (or CIA?) the ability to be able to bypass security on any Apple phone even if it turned out the government figured how to do it anyway. That was impressive. We never hear about Microsoft trying to stall the government probably because Windows already has backdoors.
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