Mozilla, Google and privacy
Posted Aug 13, 2009 22:57 UTC (Thu) by Tobu
In reply to: where does it says that?
Parent article: Ubuntu removes "multisearch"
If Mozilla cared about privacy, they would implement a same-origin policy strong enough to block tracking by advertisers. Google is the biggest advertiser on the web, with 70% of the market since acquiring DoubleClick; and Mozilla gets almost all of its revenue from Google.
- Refuse third-party cookies. Third party cookies are the most convenient way to track a user across sites (as long as the site serves ads or uses external analytics)
- Prevent history retrieval from css or the cache (demo)
- Disable the referer header, or restrict its use to embedded content
On the other hand, here is what Mozilla has done that actively helps Google harm privacy:
- Enabled keyword suggestion in the search box. This sends real-time keystrokes to Google, and paved the way for Chrome to do the same with URL keystrokes, which are a very relevant part of a user's history, and are personal information.
- Enabled an anti-phishing service (harmless apart from setting a google cookie on updates). Then enabled an opt-in enhanced version, that sends every visited URL to Google.
Also, the "do this choice very single time a cookie is supplied" option is a cop-out. This has the worst possible UI: individual pop ups that block loading, when unobtrusive notifications that can be handled in batches would be far less inconveniencing. It makes privacy into a power-user feature.
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