TrackerBlock browser add-on blocks tracking cookies

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by MrBrian, Feb 14, 2011.

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  1. MrBrian
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    MrBrian Registered Member

    For Firefox: http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/firefox
    For Internet Explorer: http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/ie

    Effectiveness study (from creator of TrackerBlock) of AdBlock Plus, Ghostery, Abine, and TrackerBlock
  2. funkydude
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    funkydude Registered Member

    The IE version is basically the IE TPL offered on the MS site.
  3. m00nbl00d
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    m00nbl00d Registered Member

    Is it me, or both lists "Block ad companies without oversight" and "Block all ad companies" are the same? They added the same list to the second one by mistake.
  4. J_L
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    J_L Registered Member

    Nice to see that it got AMO approved instead of hosting the add-on on their site.
  5. acuariano
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    acuariano Registered Member

    interesting,how often does it update?
  6. m00nbl00d
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    m00nbl00d Registered Member

    I don't know about all lists, but the one for IE (which are only domains), I'd say no less than a month (maybe a shorter period). Tracking/Cookies domains don't change that often.

    Sadly, their FAQ doesn't mention the updating interval.
  7. privacychoice
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    privacychoice Registered Member

    Hi folks, Jim Brock from PrivacyChoice here to answer any questions and take your input (which is extremely valuable to us).

    On updating, the TrackerBlock addon is constantly updated -- it gets a JSON file from our server for each session which includes the current list of tracking company domains (in some weeks we add 5+ new ones). It also updates if the "oversight" status of any company changes.
    http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/firefox

    For our IE9 implementation, those update every 3 days.
    http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/ie9

    For our IE7 and IE8 cookie block lists, unfortunately there's no means to automatically update, so you need to come retrieve it periodically.
    http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/ie

    There was mention of an error in the lists (being duplicates), which I'd love to follow up on. Which version are you referring to?

    Thanks!
  8. m00nbl00d
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    m00nbl00d Registered Member

    Thank you for the feedback, as it for sure brings some light on a few doubts I was having. :)

    I believe you're referring to one of my comments. I'm referring to this specific version http://www.privacychoice.org/trackerblock/ie

    The downloaded file is the same for both links "Block ad companies without oversight" and "Block all ad companies". I haven't checked for other versions.
  9. privacychoice
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    privacychoice Registered Member

    You're absolutely right -- there's a problem here and we are fixing now.

    I'm grateful that you found this.
  10. acuariano
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    acuariano Registered Member

    thanks for the information.
    -also can this be used along with simple adblock [adblocker for IE]
    can this be used with hosts files?
  11. privacychoice
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    privacychoice Registered Member

    Have not cconsidered or tested that (sorry), but would be interested to know.
  12. m00nbl00d
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    m00nbl00d Registered Member

    Not sure about simple adblock, but you can use for hosts file. All you got to do is convert to hosts file format, by adding either 127.0.0.1 or 0.0.0.0 before each entry (You also need to delete -d placed before each domain)

    I'm talking about the file for IE9. The one for IE7/8 would actually need to be converted to simple text, using some script, because all those entries in the XML file are contained in one single line, unlike the one for IE9.

    Maybe something PrivacyChoice could work out? Provide a hosts file format for those wishing it instead?
  13. acuariano
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    acuariano Registered Member

    also how you undo changes if you decide not to use it any longer.
  14. Indicium
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    Indicium Registered Member

    Remove tools PrivacyChoice

    Source: How do I uninstall browser features?
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2011
  15. Dude111
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    Dude111 Registered Member

    This is why its so important to ALWAYS DELETE COOKIES if you dont use something like this!
  16. Spooony
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    Spooony Registered Member

    Why not just disable them?

    That takes care of the cookies and biscuits.
    What about the refer info?
  17. lordraiden
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    lordraiden Registered Member

    @privacychoice

    I have seen that in the latest update of TrackerBlock

    Changelog:
    "This version fixes compatibility issues with Ghostery."

    Since Ghostery is quite similar to TrackerBlock, there is any advantage of TrackerBlock over Ghostery? or any advantage of using both at the same time?

    I have seen that TrackerBlock is able to block around 423 companies bugs and cookies I guess
    While Ghostery is able to block 560 bugs & 351 cookies
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2011
  18. privacychoice
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    privacychoice Registered Member

    Hey there, it's Jim from PrivacyChoice with a couple of answers for questions on this thread:

    1/ We do offer an XML file for IE7 and IE8 to enable blocking. Same database as our other TrackerBlock tools:

    http://privacychoice.org/trackerblock/ie

    2/ In terms of TrackerBlock versus Ghostery, they both are very helpful, but our focus is a little different:

    a/ we block cookie interactions based on what we think is the largest database of tracking domains, which we curate:

    http://www.privacychoice.org/companies/all

    There's overlap of course in our databases, but we believe curation is the best approach because we don't throw out the baby with the bathwater, if you know what I mean. We think if someone doesn't want any scripts or cookies at all, there are plenty of tools for that.

    b/ we provide HTML5 visibility and protection, since that's the new frontier for tracking. TrackerBlock lets you see HTML5 objects (not sure any other addon does that) and deletes HTML5 objects from the domains in our index.
  19. lordraiden
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    lordraiden Registered Member

    So let me see if I understood you well, ghostery blocks the entire cookie and TrackerBlock block just the tracking part?

    And there is something else that I don't understand very well, what is the difference btw the "opt-out cookies" list and the "tracker blocking" list, I though that the trackers can only use the cookies to track you.
    What is exactly TrackerBlock blocking in each case?

    Thanks in advance
  20. caspian
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    caspian Registered Member

    I currently use adblock plus, noscript, and better privacy. Will I get any additional benefits from using TarckerBlock?
  21. DasFox
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    DasFox Registered Member

  22. J_L
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    J_L Registered Member

    @caspian: Not much if you use EasyPrivacy filter or something similar.

    @DasFox: I don't think so.
  23. Indicium
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    Indicium Registered Member

    TrackMeNot versus PrivacyChoice

    TrackMeNot (...) helps protect web searchers from surveillance and data-profiling by search engines.

    PrivacyChoice offers tools to help you understand and make choices about your online privacy:

  24. J_L
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    J_L Registered Member

    Re: TrackMeNot versus PrivacyChoice

    We're talking about, TrackerBlock not TrackerScan.
  25. Spooony
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    Spooony Registered Member

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