Tracking You Through Browser Fingerprinting

Browser fingerprinting (also called device fingerprinting or online fingerprinting) refers to how some websites can track you across your Internet activities.

Basically it is the process of collecting information about your computer, not through cookies which is the usual method, but by how your device connects to the web sites. You don’t need to give permission to a web site to do this – it cannot be avoided.

These fingerprints can include data such as geographic location, the browser and operating system that is in use, screen resolution, system fonts, system architecture, browser plugins and system hardware.

All innocent stuff, but with enough such data, it is possible to track individuals across websites and use that information to build up a picture of the person.

That can be used for ‘positive’ reasons such as targeted advertising or for companies wanting to understand more about their customers or to restrict access to authorised users but can also be used for fraud.

There is no way to delete your browser fingerprint and no way to block it’s creation.

Some website owners and advertising networks share browser fingerprinting functionality to perform cross-site tracking. That means they use your online fingerprint to track you across the web, and collect details about you: your search history, shopping, news preferences and more.

If you have any experiences with these scams do let me know, by email.

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