Track your trackers with Mozilla Collusion

Credit: flickr/DoNotLick

Mozilla just released an experimental add-on to Firefox to show users all the third parties tracking them across the Web.

Few people on earth are watched more closely than a consumer cruising the Web looking to buy something. As privacy arguments continue to rage, knowing who is tracking you is critical to the discussion, but hard to determine. Collusion aims to provide that information. Demos and downloads are available now.

Mozilla CEO Gary Kovacs says it plain and simple: "now it's time for us to watch the watchers." Using a visual display, Collusion shows advertisers in red and websites in grey. Kovacs said in one day he found he was tracked by 150 entities. Collusion is to show consumers "what's happening without their consent."

Downloaded already

It seems like Google is the main Tracker…Not news!

DJMMortal on mashable.com

And a single page visit here at Mashable add 15 trackers!!

marketingdiy on mashable.com

Wow, there's a lot of unique information there that I didn't expect, such as installed system fonts. Hashing this information could generate a fairly reliable primary key.

Cieplak on news.ycombinator.com

What really surprised me is that running it in incognito mode (in Chrome) made absolutely no difference to my results.

aptwebapps on news.ycombinator.com

Seen it

Collusion isn’t new nor made by Mozilla. I’ve had the add-on, which is on version 15, for over a year.

Matt Jordan on mashable.com

Kinda like a pretty version of ghostery..?

Alex Wood on wired.com

However

Cookies are just an easy way to track users client side, but if there is an 'assault' on cookies, then people will just start relying more on server side tracking of users instead.

blasterford on news.ycombinator.com

All of these services / plugins / demos are incomplete without analyzing Flash cookies.

nostromo on news.ycombinator.com

What a bunch of baloney. More illusory, fake 'empowerment' to keep the suckers docile. How is it in any way helpful to me to watch people as they make money by watching me?

Cheezun_Crust on wired.com

In the battle between privacy for users and Internet tracking and marketing, what are the odds consumers will win? Place your bets in a comment below.

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