An opt-out for spyware; how considerate.

Ever see “DoubleClick” or “Advertising.com” or similar hostnames come up when you’re loading something entirely different? Those are advertising servers, and at least one group of the sneaky bastards now offers a way to opt-out of their cookies. This won’t stop you seeing ads, it will only prevent them being “targeted” — more importantly, it will stop their data collection. I had an active cookie from six of the nine network members, and their site claims I’ve now successfully opted out of all nine.
(Hat-tip: David.)

3 thoughts on “An opt-out for spyware; how considerate.

  1. It’s preferable to be able to just permit who you want to have the ability to set cookies and run JavaScript, rather than trying to opt out, which is a lot more work! Folks running the FireFox browser have two really good extensions to make that possible:
    CookieSafe — https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2497
    CookieSafe lets you easily control who and who isn’t allowed to set cookies, and whether they’re allowed to keep the cookies for more than one browser session.
    NoScript — http://noscript.net/
    NoScript does the same, except for JavaScript. This can be especially important on Windows computers for security concerns–you don’t want to allow just anyone the ability to run code on your computer. It could be malicious! You can temporarily (until the end of your browser session) allow sites to run JavaScript, or put them on a whitelist and always let them.
    These two extensions do take some work to set up, but once you’ve whitelisted most of your frequently visited sites that require cookies or JavaScript, you’ll be good to go and you won’t have to explicitly “opt out” of anyone’s tracking mechanisms anymore.

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