Here you can explore our reflections and insights on topics such as advertising, privacy, and security in the digital age.
We saw the following article pass by on a reputable technology news website: “Bad news: ‘Unblockable’ web trackers emerge. Good news: Firefox with uBlock Origin can stop it. Chrome, not so much. Ad-tech arms race continues: DNS system exploited to silently follow folks around the web” (from The Register) When we read about this, we … Continue reading “Are unblockable web trackers truly unblockable?”
Google has reversed an earlier made promise on privacy and will now allow personally identifiable web tracking: We may combine personal information from one service with information, including personal information, from other Google services — for example to make it easier to share things with people you know. […] Depending on your account settings, your … Continue reading “Google has quietly dropped ban on personally identifiable web tracking”
When peddlers of on-line advertising talk about their product, they hail ‘personalized advertising’ as a good thing, something you should actively want because, so they claim, “it is relevant content”. But if you think carefully about it, you soon realize that this framing of the situation starts from an incorrect premise, namely that it is … Continue reading “The fallacy of personalized advertising”
Advertisers know who you are, where you go, when you go there and how much time you spend where you are: Advertisers will be able to upload email lists to target customers and similar audiences with ads on search, Gmail and YouTube. This shows, yet again, that the claims about the data being anonymized, are … Continue reading “Advertisers know exactly who you are… the data is NOT anonymized”
While this article is already a couple years old, someone recently reminded us about it. The Internet started out as a way to build resilient systems: systems that could deal with black-outs or the disappearing of a server. And if one went down, we’d just prop up another one. When ‘Cloud’ was the newest buzz-word, … Continue reading “Power in the age of the feudal internet”
The Register published an article on how advertising networks used by major and popular sites are (yet once more) being hijacked by malware peddlers. IvyDNS eliminates this attack vector. It’s just another reason to no longer treat advertising as ‘harmless’ or ‘a minor nuisance’: allowing content from unknown third parties to be downloaded to and … Continue reading “Advertising networks are delivery mechanisms for malware”
The Web-of-Trust (WoT) add-on for Firefox and/or Chrome has been removed from the add-on repositories for Firefox and Chrome. Some excellent sleuthing(*) by the Norddeutscher Rundfunk revealed that the WoT add-on was selling data which can uniquely identify its users to other parties, without ever asking for consent for this, let alone in a clear … Continue reading “Web-of-Trust add-on caught selling out its users”
The guiding principle of the big web-players, like Facebook, Google, and others, is that the value provided to the users is vastly less than the value of the data that they accumulate on said users.
A person in an unmarked car following your every move and watching you 24/7 is considered creepy or requires a warrant, but replace this with an ever-expanding army of all-seeing machines who pry into everything you do on-line and everyone thinks that this is just dandy. These all-seeing machines are obviously the tracking pixels, scripts, the browser-fingerprinting, the … Continue reading “Surveillance is creepy!”
With Windows 10, Microsoft blatantly disregards user choice & privacy. That’s not (just) us saying this, these are the good folks over at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Head over to the EFF’s page for the full article, which is most definitely a worthwhile read. The amount of data that Windows 10 ‘telemetry’ sends back to … Continue reading “Windows 10 telemetry blatantly disregards user choice and privacy”