Real news from the privacy world

Super-cookies going global

What are cookies?

What are cookies?

Cookies are small packets of information left on your computer once you access certain websites. The cookie places information on your devices to later identify the returning user. This is problematic when you wish to keep your privacy to yourself, as some cookies can crawl and track you to websites you visit next- identifying your behaviour patterns and more.

See: Going Beyond VPN, what can you do to ensure your uttermost privacy?

What are super-cookies?

Super-cookies – another form of cookies that raise even bigger question of consent, because it is very difficult to detect and delete them. Unlike the traditional cookie clean-up – the super-cookie might be embedded on your device without your knowledge and would be near impossible to delete. Further, they can contain information including browsing history, authentication details and ad-targeting data.

A recent study reported at least nine telecommunications providers were using super-cookies to monitor their customer online behaviour. A website set up to test whether mobile devices were tracked – has reported that 15.3 percent of visitors tested had the tracking headers inserted on their devices. What was interesting to see is that users were from all over the world (US, Canada, The Netherlands, Peru, Spain Morocco, etc.)

What can be done to prevent super-cookies being downloaded on your device?

Because a super- cookie is unique data packet that is injected into HTTP request made through the network providers network – avoiding HTTP site protocol. Choose preferences and try limiting your browsing to HTTPS protocol, which has SSL/TLS encryption.

An alternative is testing whether your provider tends to use super-cookies and switch to another provider that does not use super-cookies.

super- cookie is unique data packet

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