back to article Microsoft STALKS YOU even more than supermarkets do, says dev

Web-tracking is rife on technology vendor websites, with Microsoft among the worst offenders. Tech sites serve up even more trackers than the average online retailer, say browser privacy plug-in devs. Trackers follow surfers after they visit a website to serve behavioural ads elsewhere online. The technology started in the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Behavioural Adverts?

    What are they?

    Of silly me, I use Adblock+ and will continue to do so until enough money has greased enough palms for the various governments to outlaw things like this.

    Other things like NoScript are your friend here as well.

    Anon because I don't like to be tracked by anyone. (yeah I know this is a lost cause)

    1. Zaphod.Beeblebrox
      Thumb Up

      Re: Behavioural Adverts?


      Adblock+ and NoScript FTW!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Re: Behavioural Adverts?

      +1 here as well.

      Its truly amazing how fast the service provided by AdBlock updates. I recently got confronted with a company which had completely redesigned its website and as a result most of the contents got lost. As it turned out; AdBlock was blocking this.

      So; after trying to determine what exactly was causing this (and failing) I prepared to send feedback. "Please wait while we're updating all subscriptions to make sure...". Page reload and wham. Working.

      And I just updated no longer than a week ago ;-)

    3. Fatman Silver badge

      Re: Behavioural Adverts?

      Ghostery is your friend as well; in addition to the two you mentioned.

      Every time I hit a web site, a listing of the trackers found pops up in the corner, and it is pleasant to see all of them stricken out, indicating that they are blocked.

  2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    1. Dr. Ellen

      Re: Firefox

      My Firefox has NoScript and Ad Block Plus -- but I'm using Do Not Track Plus to fend off the trackers also. This seems to work, though since I don't see the ads, 'they' may well be sending targeted ads in my direction.

  3. Magister

    Not working?

    Here the interesting thing; I go onto (for example) a Microsoft UK website. The behavioural ad tracking then delivers adverts in French (possibly because the company breakout is in the Netherlands).

    That's fine, but then when I use the laptop from someone else's wifi, the ads in French still appear even for several days after.

    As my language skills are on a par with my ability to see through walls, adverts in French don't really "couper le moutarde"; but hey, it's their money to waste.

  4. Detective Emil


    66 trackers on Apple's site? Where? I've browsed around, and Ghostery, the software being pimped, consistently shows just one on every page I visited (always the same one from Omniture: if there's one thing you can rely on about Apple, it's that there'll be no beacons from any Google property — unlike, let's say, The Register). And, no I'm not using an ad blocker. Same story with Microsoft, except they go with Webtrends. If you want to give Ghostery a better work out, just visit any UK newspaper site (except The Times).

    1. adnim Silver badge

      Re: Citation?

      Does the site have 66 pages?

  5. Miek
    Big Brother

    If it's anything to go by ... I installed Windows 8 on my laptop so that my Colleague could have at it (and so I could laugh at him trying to work out how to find anything)

    I had to turn off several intrusive features that either wanted to send every URL you visited to $MS or any file/application you ran to be sent to them. Other features, such as, report application usage, could not be disabled. $MS wants to catalogue your every activity under the guise of "Maintaining Your Security"

  6. M Gale

    Google are evil. Google are evil. Google are evil. Google are evil. Google are evil.

    But surely Microsoft make all their money from borging whole industries, trolling other software companies with spurious patent allegations, and selling you overpriced software that has been shown can be made for free?

    What, you mean they're all at the privacy-invasion game? Say it ain't so!

  7. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    Beef Taco

    Beef Taco is another weapon in your Firefox arsenal. It sets lots of cookies saying "Don't track me"

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Big <3 for Ghostery - its the next best thing to NoScript but it still means I can use websites that use JS (such as my own company's product and our client sites I'm supposed to be developing!) I find NoScript a bit of a sledgehammer to crack a nut, whereas Ghostery is a more surgical tool to keep my online data out of the hands of wankers.

  9. h3

    Problem with Ghostery is it seems to slow everything down. (Stuff waiting to timeout).

  10. Gordon Henderson


    The Collusion plugin for Firefox makes for intersting viewing - letting you see what sites set cookes for what other sites in a nice visual sort of fashion...


  11. Magani


    "Trackers follow surfers after they visit a website to serve behavioural ads elsewhere online."

    ...if you do this in the real world, it is called Stalking?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow, I am astonished

    So surprised about M$

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