Think for a minute about some of the sites you visit on a regular basis. Now think about this: what information does your browser send to those sites when you load it up?
For many users, that's probably something along the lines of "URL requested, IP address, cookies if they're already saved" and maybe some other data related to page views. Yet as we've discussed in previous articles , there is so much more information available for websites to compile about their visitors beyond just those three things - especially if they are working with third party companies like Google Analytics or Facebook Ads. So really, how much can these companies find out about you based on what your browser sends them?
Well...just about .
The amount of information available in web browser headers is absolutely staggering when you consider the vast amount of data points that may be included in a single request, and this information can range from a user's device type to their geographic location.
While some of this information seems useful - like the optimized version of a site that your browser requests based on your connection speed - there's also potentially some rather personal info being sent across. For example, did you know that if you have an ad blocker installed the sites you visit will often get access to your IP address? In fact, here are some browsers and what they send by default for informational purposes:
Browser Name Browser Version URL Requested Protocol HTTP/HTTPS Headers Sent Chrome 57 http://example.com/ HTTP Basic (Authorization: Basic ...) Chrome 57 https://example.com/ HTTP Basic (Authorization: Basic...) Firefox 52 http://example.com/ HTTP Cookie, IP, Hostname, URL Path Chrome 57 https://example.com/ HTTP Cookie, IP, Hostname, URL Path Internet Explorer 11.0.9600.18098 http://example.com/ HTTP Cookie, IP, Hostname Internet Explorer 11.0.9600.18314 https://example.com/ HTTP Cookie, IP, Hostname Safari 10 http://example.com/ HTTP Referer [sic], Cookies Apple Safari 10 https://www2.bigcommerce .com/?rb=1&tid =1568867499742 HTTPS Referer [sic], Cookies
We're not saying that this is all happening without your knowledge...or even against your will. Sites like Google actually use data you send them to improve services like Gmail and Chrome, while countless other companies are using third party tools like Adroll or Facebook's Pixel to track user behavior for marketing purposes. This information can also potentially be used by hackers who want to scout out weak points in a site to exploit (though most smart sites filter out any sensitive information before it reaches the public).
But at the same time, it's worth noting that many end users aren't exactly aware of what they're sending when they load up their favorite websites - which may or may not have associations with advertisers or governments - so it's often difficult for them to know what they can do about it. Consequently, there's been a recent trend towards websites anonymizing user data to make the information they send back more vague (for example, Google recently announced that Chrome users will soon be able to use an incognito mode which won't allow sites to save any cookies), but we'll leave the final judgement on the effectiveness of such measures up to you.
Read Next: Companies who track your browsing history are subjecting you to targeted advertising and invading your privacy
So basically nothing is safe and nothing is private anymore? What did we just tell everyone here at InfoWars not too long ago about using Tor and VPNs? I think the government should be banned from such tracking and keep our privacy safe. Reply Delete
You should start selling T-shirts with that printed on the front. "Nothing is safe and nothing is private anymore" I'm going to get one - for sure! Delete
Well if we ever wanted to take over (and succeed) at staying in control of information the government has on us, this would be a good way to do it: simply remove all digital files from their servers, thus making them have NOTHING ON US. Of course this will be hard, but if enough people did something similar, it could work. Just a thought... Delete
Why encrypt everything when you can run TOR & VPNs? That's the question everyone has been asking for years. And it's tough to answer because if you're just surfing around, not doing anything illegal, then encrypting everything would seem a bit paranoid. But at the same time, we've heard too many stories about government/agency spying and snooping going on. The problem is there's no real proof of anything being done...so instead everyone just goes on using their daily lives as normal without thinking twice about all this stuff until somebody like Edward Snowden comes along and tells us what they know (and possibly even lies). Delete
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