If you are online in any way whatsoever then you are being tracked by advertisers and malicious marketers, data collectors, and purveyors of private information that you own but that is being taken from you; likely without your knowledge? Where is the war?
Browsers And Apps
One unfortunate aspect of the public internet is the pervasiveness of advertising supported information. Advertising makes the internet’s wheels move. Every search you make on Google, for example, results in information extracted from you, gathered by Google, Facebook, and other advertisers, and shared in the background to build a personal profile of you, your habits, your family, where you live, what you do, and what you know.
Privacy and security? Bah humbug. Those are relics of the past. We live in an era where humanity is all too willing to give up both to feed on the dopamine released in an ongoing cause and effect dance while what once was private has become public but owned by those we do not know and cannot see.
Google, Facebook, and most internet website advertisers make their money by extracting personal information while we use our devices to browse the internet or remain engrossed in the light of free applications that provide us with dopamine fixes in exchange for free to inexpensive applications.
Apple’s business model is different. For the most part, Apple makes money the old fashioned way. It sells products. If we like them, we pay and buy more. Recognizing yet another way to differentiate itself from competitors who take user information, Apple has improved the Safari browsing experience by allowing third party ad blockers as extensions, and adjusted Safari itself by implementing an Intelligent Prevention Tracking mechanism which prevents users from being tracked as they were before IPT.
Hit Google with the search keywords ‘intelligent tracking prevention safari apple’ and you’ll be greeted with the advertising industry’s response to Safari’s new ITP technology. Advertisers and marketers are squealing like pigs because they stand to lose hundreds of millions of dollars while Apple’s Safari browser users bask in less online tracking.
What happens when you visit a website? In most cases, you’ll read an article embedded somewhere within the various ads displayed on the webpage. What you don’t see is what is going on behind the scenes while you read. Data is being captured and exchanged between advertisers and marketers. Your browser gets stuck with a cookie to mark you and that cookie can stay there forever unless you delete it. Apple has changed those rules so such information about you is more difficult to track and gather.
Ad tracking technology has become so pervasive that it is possible for ad tracking companies to recreate the majority of a person’s web browsing history. This information is collected without permission and is used for ad re-targeting, which is how ads follow people around the internet.
Apple’s ITP initiative changed the odds back to your favor, and that put the ad industry into uproar mode.
The infrastructure of the modern internet depends on consistent and generally applicable standards for cookies, so digital companies can innovate to build content, services and advertising that are personalised for users and remember their visits. Apple’s Safari move breaks those standards and replaces them with an amorphous set of shifting rules that will hurt the user experience and sabotage the economic model for the internet.
Them’s fightin’ words.
What is Google doing? As usual, playing both sides wherever it can. An upcoming version of Google’s Chrome browser will have a built-in ad blocker, but that was created in a partnership with the ad industry to limit intrusive ads, autoplaying media, popovers that block content, and those awful interstitial ads which own the screen.
What can you do? Ad blockers help. So does a VPN. Both combine to shield you from most trackers, but the effort might be too little too late. Google, Facebook, Amazon and other notorious trackers already know who you are, where you live, what you do, where you go, and what you’re worth.
Of course, Mac360 and other Villagers websites do not use trackers or analytics trackers or even cookies. You’re safe here. But Google, Facebook, Amazon, et al know where else you’ve been.