Non-motoring > How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking Miscellaneous
Thread Author: zippy Replies: 9

 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - zippy
I keep getting served adverts on this site for a car.

I have been getting it for the last 2 months.

Wouldn't normally think much of it as I am in the market for a new motor, it's just that the car is my old lease car (same reg number) that went back to the lease company in the first week of February 2020!

It seems a bit much to think its just a coincidence - though as a guess having looked at it once it remembers that, even though I delete cookies. It also appears on every device I use - works or personal.

I also note that the lease costs over 3 years and the current sales price add up to more than the original list price of the car (£28k) but not the invoice price (about £20k).

 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - Terry
It is completely impossible to understand what cookies you are accepting on different websites.

I work on the basis that for known sites they are probably ok - or if not anti virus software should pick them up.

And as I suspect that many organisations that exploit any data they gather from me, I simply delete all cookies every few months. Slght pain for a short time afterwards but at least I know there is minimal c**p living on my hard drive.
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - Manatee
I assume you're usually signed in? Perhaps enables the data to persist/repopulate even after you have deleted cookies.
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - tyrednemotional
...doesn't necessarily need cookies. Look up "browser fingeprinting".
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - smokie
EditThisCookie is a browser add-on which allows you to manage cookies per site. I've installed it but rarely done much with it, except I had to clear cookies for the bank site each time I used the VPN (or something like that) when I was working.

You can see what cookies you have on the site you are logged in to and view the detail of those cookies but on this site the detail is meaningless - just strings of numbers, which I suppose could be hashed/encrypted info.
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - No FM2R
As TnE said, fingerprinting. Cookies are a trivial part of it.

Imagine someone wants to track you and target you. For this they need a whole bunch of information about you, and it's a list you would never give.

So they start with one stake in the ground, your browsing fingerprint. In fact in the beginning it is not unique, but it is rare enough for that not to be important.

Everytime you go somewhere with that fingerprint, you are identified and a bunch of data attached to that fingerprint.

What could they find over time? They know where you eat as you left a review, you searched for particular cars on Autotrader, you bought beans from Lidl, you visited particular sites of particular interest or hobbies, you liked something in particular on Facebook, you searched for something on Google - etc. etc. etc.

If you click on a link, then the receiving site knows where you cane from and gets handed a bunch of information (the stuff after a question mark in a link)

Of course, Site A is only a DIY site, and they're not into that, so they sell your data to someone who buys lots of data. They can then build a frightening profile of you, which they can then sell.

Every time you visit the internet you are adding to that profile. And if you use a different browser or computer, in time that will get added to the same profile.

And of course, the bigger and broader the site the more varied the information they gather and the more complete, and thus valuable it is.

Why do you think Facebook, for example, can charge so much for advertising? Because they can target it at a level you'd really rather not know about.

The more data they gather, the more they can charge for their advertising.

Everybody is doing it. Either to use the data themselves or to sell the data to someone who will.
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - No FM2R
I shouldn't have bothered, this explains it far better....
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - smokie
Both were a good read, thanks.

I regard myself as reasonably tech savvy and already was aware of quite a bit of that but it is truly scary isn't it, when you think about the picture "they" can build of you, and what can be done with it.
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - No FM2R
>> it is truly scary isn't it, when you think about the picture "they" can build of you, and what can be done with it.

As long as it remains in the control of commercial organisations, probably not "scary" as such. But if Governments get hold of it then it could be a very different thing. It doesn't bear thinking what someone like Trump or the likes of Dominic Cummings could make of it.

Also, just to add, I realise I was not clear on some things;

Firstly if an organisation is able to obtain data from a variety of quite different sources, and then add them together, then the associations and resulting profile do start to get pretty awesome.

Hence the interest Facebook had for WhatsApp and Instagram. That's data on 4 billion people (I have no idea of the duplications in that) that they are collecting directly, never mind associations that can be made and add-on data which can be bought.

Secondly, don't forget it is happening to everyone. So you can be connected to others with whom associate further widening their ability to make assumptions about you.

Last edited by: No FM2R on Sat 27 Jun 20 at 22:34
 How Detailed are Internet Cookies / Tracking - zippy
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