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Category Archives: Search Engines

Meta injecting code into websites to track its users, research says

UK Guardian – “Meta, the owner of Facebook and Instagram, has been rewriting websites its users visit, letting the company follow them across the web after they click links in its apps, according to new research from an ex-Google engineer. The two apps have been taking advantage of the fact that users who click on links are taken to webpages in an “in-app browser”, controlled by Facebook or Instagram, rather than sent to the user’s web browser of choice, such as Safari or Firefox. “The Instagram app injects their tracking code into every website shown, including when clicking on ads, enabling them [to] monitor all user interactions, like every button and link tapped, text selections, screenshots, as well as any form inputs, like passwords, addresses and credit card numbers,” says Felix Krause, a privacy researcher who founded an app development tool acquired by Google in 2017. In a statement, Meta said that injecting a tracking code obeyed users’ preferences on whether or not they allowed apps to follow them, and that it was only used to aggregate data before being applied for targeted advertising or measurement purposes for those users who opted out of such tracking…”

Google Will Start Letting You Know When You Can’t Just Google It

BuzzFeedNews: “If Google isn’t confident about the overall quality of search results when you search for something, it will now let you know at the top of the results page. “This doesn’t mean that no helpful information is available, or that a particular result is low-quality,” Pandu Nayak, Google’s vice president of search, said in… Continue Reading

DuckDuckGo browser now blocks all third-party Microsoft trackers

Bleeping Computer: “DuckDuckGo announced today that they will now be blocking all third-party Microsoft tracking scripts in their privacy browser after failing to block them in the past. This change comes after the company faced massive blowback in May for not blocking some third-party Microsoft trackers in the DuckDuckGo browser due to a syndicated search content… Continue Reading

Brave vs. Tor: Which Browser Offers More Security and Privacy?

MakeUseOf: “There are dozens of web browsers out there, some more popular than others, but only a select few can actually be considered both safe and private. Brave and the Tor Browser are certainly among them, and though they are similar in some respects, they are two very different pieces of software. So, how exactly… Continue Reading

Open-source flight trackers have been repeatedly used to break news over the last few weeks

Vice: “More than 700,000 people were tracking the flight path of the U.S. military plane believed to be carrying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi this morning. She touched down in Taiwan at 10:50 pm local time, making Pelosi the first high-ranking American official to visit the self-governing island in 25 years, amid threats of a military… Continue Reading

Time to update: Latest Google Chrome browser fixes 27 security flaw

ZDNet – “Google has released Chrome 104 stable with fixes for seven ‘high’ and 15 ‘medium’ severity flaws. Google has released Chrome version 104 for Windows, Mac and Linux, with fixes for 27 security bugs reported by third parties.  None of the flaws are listed as being actively exploited, but the release notes for Chrome… Continue Reading

Gmail’s new search tweaks will make sure you’re emailing the right person

The Verge: “Google’s improving Gmail’s search results, which should make it easier to find a specific contact. In a blog post, Google explains it’s rolling out “intent matching for names and email addresses,” as well as new “personalized suggestions” in Gmail. With intent matching, a machine learning tool Google uses to help you find topics… Continue Reading

The Default Tech Settings You Should Turn Off Right Away

The New York Times – “These controls, which are buried inside products from Apple, Google, Meta and others, make us share more data than we need to…Apple, Google, Amazon, Meta and Microsoft generally want us to leave some default settings on, purportedly to train their algorithms and catch bugs, which then make their products easier… Continue Reading

Misinformation is eroding the public’s confidence in democracy

Brookings – Misinformation is eroding the public’s confidence in democracy: “Democracy in the United States is in serious trouble. A review of some recent public opinion research shows just how much. For example, an NPR survey conducted earlier this year found that 64% of the American population believes that U.S. democracy is in crisis and… Continue Reading

Google Maps rolls out location sharing notifications, immersive views and better bike navigation

TechCrunch: “Google — facing increasing competition from other apps like Instagram and TikTok when it comes to consumers searching for things — wants to be the first place people go for discovery and planning pastimes. In aid of that, today the company announced three new features for its star navigation app, Google Maps: aerial and… Continue Reading