Afraid That Websites Are Tracking Your Personal Information ?

block-cookie-informationAre you afraid that some websites may be tracking your private information and collecting the information on their servers ? Do you want a better way to disallow specific websites from tracking browser cookies, your browsing history and don’t want to compromise on user privacy?

Earlier, we have discussed some browser extensions which can be used to disallow cookies from specific sites. As an example, the Widgetblock extension for Google Chrome blocks and removes all the bulky social widgets from all the webpages you visit.

Then there is the Facebook disconnect extension for Chrome which completely removes Facebook widgets, like buttons and social plugins from all websites you visit.

But what about the Analytics tools and visitor tracking programs like Google Analytics, Sitemeter, Quantcast and other specific third party tracking services which try to collect information from your browsing history ? How do you prevent third party sites from tracing your browsing history?

Meet Disconnect – a Google Chrome extension which prevents search engines and third party websites from tracking your browsing history. The extension is also available for Rockmelt and Safari.

Once the extension is installed, it continues working in the background and automatically blocks widgets, icons, images and any other object from a third party site which may collect visitor information from the client side. You can click the extension button from the right top of browser address bar and see which websites were requesting information from your browsing history.

In this example screenshot to the right, it can be seen that the extension has blocked advertising cookies, third party visitor tracing cookies as well as blocking widgets such as Job boards, Advertisements, Add this and other social networking features embedded in the website you were browsing on.

The corresponding widgets turn down to a Blue box as shown below



In addition to blocking social widgets and third party visitor tracking scripts, the extension goes the extra mile and prevents search engines from collecting visitor information from the clients browser.

When I installed the extension, I was unable to search this site using the Google custom search box placed at the right top corner of the page. The search results were blocked along with the advertisements and other icons, pictures from Facebook, Twitter etc.

If you are not happy with the results, you can always unblock a few sites or search engines from the extension preferences. Then reload the page again and the blocked objects should appear just as fine. Example: Yahoo has to be unblocked while you’re logging into Flickr or Delicious but can be blocked again afterwards.

Another neat thing regarding Disconnect is that it shows the number of cookies blocked in real time.

Give this a try –

Related: How to securely search Google

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