tracking

Wed
21
Aug
John Lister's picture

Facebook To Reveal User Tracking Secrets

Facebook is to show users what data it collects about their activity on other sites. It won't stop tracking, but will make the data anonymous if users ask. The changes will come in a new settings option called "Off-Facebook Activity." This will list ... all websites and apps that share data about user activity with Facebook. This most commonly happens through two methods. One is that the user has opted to log in to the third-party site through Facebook. In other words, as long as they haven't logged out of their Facebook account, they don't need to create or input user names and passwords for the ... (view more)

Thu
06
Jun
John Lister's picture

Firefox Adds Enhanced Password Manager, Cookie Blocking

Mozilla has made two major changes to make Firefox browsing easier and safer. It's adding a robust password manager and and enhanced cookie blocking feature that will help avoid dubious online tracking. The password manager is called Firefox ... Lockwise. For now it's only available as a browser extension, rather than being built into the browser itself. It's the same service that was previously available on mobile devices as "LockBox." The basic functions of Lockwise include being able to store login credentials and access from multiple devices, and are much the same as on third-party ... (view more)

Tue
07
May
John Lister's picture

Google's New Cookie Tracking Policy Raises Eyebrows

Google is set to make it easier for users to block tracking cookies. Perhaps unsurprisingly the reported changes would also be very helpful for Google. Cookies are small files that a website saves onto a computer's hard drive via the web browser. ... When the user next returns to the site, it will check for cookies and use the information to customize the site's content or appearance. For example, if a user were to enter in their name and password on a forum website and then selected the "remember me" option, this preference would be saved using a cookie. The next time the user visits ... (view more)

Thu
16
Aug
John Lister's picture

Experiment Unveils Google Location Tracking

Google has been tracking mobile device users movements even when they have "Location History" switched off. It turns out users need to turn off a less well-known setting to stop tracking altogether. The issue doesn't just affect devices running ... Android. Some iPhones are also affected if they have Google apps such as Maps or Search running. In theory, switching off the Location History setting on your device or in a Google account will prevent the company tracking and storing location information. The immediate effect is visible as the timeline feature in Google Maps will stop updating. ... (view more)

Tue
22
May
John Lister's picture

Google Sued $4B for 'Secretly Tracking Users'

Google is being sued for a potential $4 billion over claims it intentionally bypassed security settings on iPhones. It's likely to succeed following similar cases in the past. The case has been filed in the UK by a group called 'Google You Owe Us'. ... They are seeking "representative action" status, which is similar to class action status in the United States. If that's granted, any settlement or damages in the case could apply to as many as 4.4 million people. (Source: theguardian.com ) Claims May Sound Familiar On the face of it, the case looks bad for Google as it covers the same issue ... (view more)

Tue
30
Jan
John Lister's picture

Report: Fitness Apps May Compromise Military Security

Fitness apps used by soldiers may have inadvertently revealed their location and activities while deployed overseas. They've been warned to activate privacy options that can prevent data collection. The problem is with an app called Strava, which ... lets users track their activity when they go running or cycling. It goes beyond some apps that simply allow individuals to keep their own records or choose to share them with friends for motivation or suggested routes. Instead, Strava combines all the data collected from a reported 27 million users and produces "heat maps" that show the most ... (view more)

Thu
23
Nov
John Lister's picture

Google Tracked User Location even when GPS Turned Off

Google has admitted it tracked the location of cellphone users even when they had location services switched off. It says it's now stopped an 11-month program designed to improve "message delivery." Having location services switched on allows an ... Android phone to collect information about a user's location, commonly combining GPS data, details of nearby WiFi networks, and the location of nearby cellphone towers - all of which can be detected by a phone. Google - and third party app makers - use this data for tools such as mapping, navigation and finding nearby outlets of a particular chain of ... (view more)

Wed
30
Aug
John Lister's picture

Uber Ditches Post-Ride User Tracking

Uber has ditched a policy that meant it could track a user's location for five minutes after the cab has dropped them off. The move could be related to a change in management. Until last November, users had the option to only give the 'ridesharing' ... app permission to access location data on their phone while they were actually using it. Following an update, users had to choose between giving permission for continuous tracking or having location details switched off completely. Customers Choose Between Privacy and Convenience The latter option meant that although the app would still work, users ... (view more)

Wed
08
Feb
John Lister's picture

Smart TV Maker Spied on Viewing Habits, Sold Data

Vizio is to pay $2.2 million in fines after tracking viewing habits on 11 million smart TVs without their owners' knowledge or permission. They then sold the details, including personal information, to advertisers. As part of a settlement, Vizio has ... now agreed to inform customers about the practice and promises to always get their express consent before tracking any viewing. It will also have to delete much of the data it has already collected. Vizio had relied on the idea that customers retained enough control because there was a setting named "Smart Interactivity" that could ... (view more)

Tue
08
Mar
John Lister's picture

Verizon Fined for Secretive Use of 'Super Cookies'

Verizon has agreed to pay a fine of $1.35 million for its use of controversial "super cookies." The files, which are solely used to track its own users, were set up in a way that made them difficult if not impossible to delete. Cookies are small ... text files placed on a user's computer by a website. In many cases, cookies have a perfectly legitimate use of identifying a visitor, even if the site doesn't have a login or registration system. Examples of such user might include a weather site automatically delivering a forecast for the user's preferred location, or a sports ... (view more)

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