Tech News: Samsung to reportedly abandon Qualcomm ultrasonic fingerprint scanners – PocketNow

What Is a Fingerprint and How Can I Stop Websites from Tracking Me?

Modern websites use a lot of different scripts to instruct the browser about what to do. Some of these scripts tell the browser to pass private information such as your operating system, version of the OS, apps you are using, installed fonts, screen resolution, and many more.

This information is then compiled into a profile to create your device fingerprint to track you around the web. It is known as browser fingerprinting or device fingerprinting. You can prevent websites from tracking you by using the best antidetect browsers. More on that here.

What Is Device Fingerprinting?

Fingerprinting a device is similar to fingerprinting a human. It is all about collecting unique attributes of a device through the browser to track the device in the middle of a crowd.

Consider identifying a person in a crowd. It is the easiest way to collect specific attributes about the person, such as hair color, eye color, height, weight, dress style, dress color, shoe color, etc.

With these attributes, you can easily identify a person, even in a huge crowd. Websites do the same thing by including secret scripts that look the same as general scripts in their codes.

These scripts tell your browser to smuggle different data strings about your device and browser. For example, a website can collect information about the operating system on your device, screen resolution, browser type and version, and many more.

This information is used to identify your browsing behavior and show personalized ads in most cases. But still, it is an invasion of your privacy. Device fingerprinting has become a common practice to track people across the internet without letting them know anything about the process.

Are Fingerprinting and Cookies the Same?

You all might be familiar with cookies. Websites use cookies to track a set of information. But that happens with your consent. You have the option to allow or deny the usage of cookies. You can even delete cookies to make your browsing private.

But you can’t remove fingerprinting as it doesn’t need your consent. The process runs in the background without asking any permission from you. And you can’t identify fingerprinting scripts as they are in the disguise of required scripts on a website.

This is the main problem with device fingerprinting. As you don’t know whether there is any harmful script that snatches information from you without your consent, fighting back is quite difficult.

How Does Fingerprinting Work?

As we have already mentioned, fingerprinting scripts collect important information about your system to create a unique profile of yourself and use this profile to track your browsing history to create a pattern.

You might know about APIs that are very common in modern web browsers. Website scripts use this feature to collect different attributes of your device to identify it as a unique one.

Device fingerprinting is often used in cross-site tracking so that they can track your browsing history or shopping preferences to show you personalized ads. As the marketing tools gradually strengthen, device fingerprints are invaluable to marketing companies to track your movement on the internet.

How Can I Stop Websites from Tracking Me?

As of now, it’s almost impossible to prevent device fingerprinting in traditional methods. Even if you use incognito modes in your browser, delete cookies, run an ad blocker, or use virtual private networks, you can still be seen as a unique identity.

This is where antidetect browsers come into play. They have strong tools to fight against device fingerprinting. Two methods are commonly used to make you identifiable a lot more difficult than it is now. Let’s see.

Generalization

Remember the attributes we have talked about to identify a person in the crowd? An easy way to blend yourself in the crowd is to wear those same attributes. As the uniqueness is reduced by generalization, the chances of identifying you are also reduced by a great extent.

Randomization

You can still be identified while carrying the same attributes as some other persons. This is why antidetect browsers manipulate APIs to change your attributes every once in a while.

So, you can imagine how difficult it will be to identify someone who is changing his appearance periodically and getting blended with other identities in the crowd. This is by far the most effective way to prevent websites from tracking you.

Conclusion

You might already assume that fingerprints are the new IP address for tracking you across the internet. Every bit of information collected through your browser is used to track your behavioral pattern and sell you different stuff.

Fighting this privacy invasion can only be possible with an antidetect browser. It will help you hide your digital fingerprint and make your browsing more secure than ever.