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Website Monitoring Practices Taking Advantage of Critical Loopholes in Privacy Protection

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley’s School of Information have released a report raising concern over website monitoring practices which appear to be taking advantage of critical loopholes in privacy protection. According to the study, most popular websites in the United States “all share data with their corporate affiliates and allow third parties to collect information directly by using tracking beacons known as ‘Web bugs’—despite the sites’ claims that they don’t share user data with third parties.”

Researchers Joshua Gomez, Travis Pinnick and Ashkan Soltani spent a year analyzing the data collection and data sharing practices of the 50 most visited Web sites. They were advised by Brian W. Carver, an assistant professor at the Information School. In their report just posted on a new Web site called “Know Privacy,” the researchers call for significant changes in Internet privacy policies.

Related Links:
Web privacy report finds widespread data sharing, ‘Web bugs’ UC Berkeley, Jun.2.2009
Web Trackers Systematically Compromise Users’ Privacy Tim Wilson, DarkReading, Jun.3.2009
Google Is Top Tracker of Surfers in Study Miguel Helft, NYT, Jun.2.2009
Privacy study shows Google’s eyes are everywhere Steven E.F. Brown, SF Business Times, Jun.2.2009

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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