How to know which websites are tracking you online (and how)

The internet just got paranoid after the leaks from NSA revealed that the US government is spying on the internet. While you may not be able to perfectly block yourself from being monitored by NSA, you can most definitely protect yourself being tracked by the many websites online.

Many websites track your website activity using the harmless Google Analytics, and many other analytic programs like Omniture, DoubleClick, and also many revenue advertising programs, like AdSense, DoubleClick (again), etc. There are, however, some websites with malicious intent that track you online, for some malicious reasons, of course.


Ghostery is a popular browser extension for Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Safari and even Internet Explorer.   This extension sits as a background process throughout your browsing session. It monitors all websites for trackers, tracking cookies, beacons, etc. which it maintains in a blacklist. As soon as it is encountered in a websites, you can block it individually or set it to block such privacy invasions, automatically.

Google and Facebook didn’t seem to have any trackers in their websites. Bing, on the other hand, had as much as 2 trackers tracking your movements across the website. Microsoft’s homepage had 4 trackers, whereas surprisingly, Gmail has only one Google+ tracker (which may still be enough to worry people).

Blogs are the group of websites that track you a lot. This is mostly because blogs use advertisements and revenue services, to track their website’s performance. Top blogs like Mashable, The Next Web, etc. use about 7-12 trackers. This blog seems to use 4 trackers, for analytics and advertisements purposes.

Do you know any website that does malicious tracking? Do let us know!

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