The above title sounds like a common horror movie’s dialogue, but it has an important place in the world of the Internet. Just imagine that you are surfing the Internet on your PC, sitting on an Armchair, unaware of a dark shadow standing behind you. Watching all your activity, watching each word that you type; What will be your reaction? For me, I will just run away.
But, when we look at your daily websites from a technical view, there are a lot of shadows hidden from your eyes that are watching all your activity, following you with your each click.
Mainly, this whole process of tracking & following is used to gain information about the web user and change the internet of ads according to it. (Remember when you viewed an item on an E-commerce site and just after that every website you visit contain ads related to that product.) And this analysis of visitor behaviour is known as Website visitor tracking or WVT.
It is useful for the economy as that analysis of the individual’s web activity can be used to provide that visitor with content related to his/her preferences and it could be either during or after a visit on the site. But somehow, the use of WVT technologies is controversial. As it also has an added danger of selling or theft of personal data along its usage by spammers and hackers. And according to internet rules and acts of various regions, if this thing is done without the knowledge of a user, it’s considered a breach of browser security. Not for sure something big, but you can do something against it, if it feels bad to you.
Thinking to take an action?
Before you make your way to the court or police station, make sure that you didn’t give them permission to track or watch you. (No, never! Why would I do that?) Actually, over 97% of you did. How? Did anyone of you ever read those Terms and Conditions before accepting them? Who has got time for that? Right? NO! If you did read those terms and conditions before signing up for your social network account or your email. If you will read them, you will find that you have given them proper permission to track you, follow you and also, to use the Cookies.
Wait, What are the cookies?
Right now, many of you are having this question in your mind. You have heard of this terms in a lot of web articles and also, from your Mom’s mouth. But these cookies doesn’t taste as good as your mother’s cookies. So, in actual, Cookies are the text bits that your browser download as you surf the web. And these carry some useful information about your interaction with the web. So, if you visit a website that you have visited before, your browser and the website as well, will know that you have been there before. And if you use a different computer, open a new web browser or delete your cookies, the will treat you as this is your first visit at that place. This helps in better and improved functioning of browser; They try to learn your preferences (They remember the volume of the video player that you used last time); they try to understand the users (You always see the top stories according to your interests in the newsfeed.) and with these small things they try to make user experience better.
I will not say that you have to worry too much, but as I said above, if I was at your place, I will not stay tension free, at all. So, what can you do about that? I have already shared a lot of tips to for a more private browsing that you can read anytime, but if you still worry about your Cookies.
Here are some tips to protect your cookies (You can use them in both, your real and virtual life):
- Eat them in a private place: You can do your daily searches in incognito mode or surf the whole web in an Anonymous mode. I mean, just do the work that needs privacy in a private manner. And if you want to do it in a simple way, just go incognito mode. (Using chrome? Press ctrl+shift+N)
- Keep you cookies in a Jar: You can use a privacy protection software or a simple browser extension to block all the trackers. And also, you can use your basic knowledge to save your cookies. In other words, delete your cookies at a regular interval and use the private mode whenever you can.
- Cookies are not for Sharing: Seriously, just like the passwords, don’t let anyone steal your cookies. Even if that person is your friend, never share your browser’s data with him. (This is 21st century and you can only trust that man in the mirror.) You never know what that person can use that information for, from cracking your passwords to hacking your private life.
I think that this information was enough to make you aware about the person standing behind you. And before ending this article, I want to share a message that one of our readers sent me about the last article via Facebook: