What Websites Know About You

Tech TipsWeb Tools – I wrote about using the privacy web tool WEBKAY for the first time (“What Can Websites Find Out From Your Browser?“) in July of 2017. While I was out walking today I was listening to an episode of the “Mac Geek Gab” podcast. They mentioned using WEBKAY and I thought it was time to revisit it.

WEBKAY

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 6.21.21 PM

What WEBKAY (What Every Browser Knows About You) does is to analyze your brower’s settings. Just open http://webkay.robinlinus.com in your brower and you will see a report displayed of what any website can find out about you! Among the datapoints displayed are:

  • your location (using your IP address)
  • the type of hardware the browser is running on
  • the operating system and version
  • the browser and version
  • what browser plugins you have installed
  • your public IP
  • your Service Provider
  • Your download speed
  • some of the Social Media sites you are logged into

While WEBKAY may not give as much detail in their report, they do provide suggestions on how to mitigate some of the findings.

Panopticlick

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Another Web Tool that you may want to try is Panopticlick (https://panopticlick.eff.org) created by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). When you get to this site, click the “TEST ME” button.

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 6.25.24 PM

After several seconds you will see the test results displayed. It focuses on how well your browser is handling tracking. 

Click

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 6.36.38 PMA third site you might want to visit is Click (https://clickclickclick.click/). This site doesn’t give you a report as such, but it does display a running commentary on your actions while you are on the site. This is meant as a wake-up call to users as to just how much their browsers are revealing.

BrowserSpy

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 6.47.23 PM

Yet another web tool is BrowserSpy (http://browserspy.dk/). BrowserSpy can tell you much more information about your browser and system, but you have to individually select the test (there are more than 70 to choose from) to be run.

Browser Mirror

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 6.53.43 PM

Yet another web tool for assessing your browser is Browser Mirror (http://centralops.net/asp/co/browsermirror.vbs.asp). The report from this tool is similar to the others and gives a minimal report.

Staying Anonymous

There are a few things you can do if you want to be anonymous:

  • use a VPN
  • use your browsers private/anonymous browsing capability
  • turn off Javascript
  • block all cookies

NOTE: Turning off Javascript and blocking cookies may degrade how sites work or even prevent many sites from working at all.


Please take a look at my other Cyber Security articles


 

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